Mugabe secures $1 billion for Zisco revival

Mugabe secures $1 billion for Zisco revival
Published: 29 August 2017 (1112 Views)
THE Government has secured a $1 billion investment for the revival of the country's largest steel maker, the Zimbabwe Iron and Steel Company (Ziscosteel), from a Chinese company, that will see one million tonnes of steel being produced in the next 18 months.

It is projected that the investment might rise to $2 billion upon completion of all the implementation stages.

The Chinese investor is R and F Company, which is also involved in various investments spanning from mining, real estate and tourism.

R and F's subsidiary based in Hong Kong is the one that had expressed interest in Ziscosteel, and Industry and Commerce Minister Dr Mike Bimha last month signed the implementation framework with the company in China.

Yesterday, R and F president Mr Jang Li paid a courtesy call on President Mugabe at State House in Harare as part of expressing confidence in the deal.

Speaking to journalists after the meeting, Dr Bimha said the new Ziscosteel deal had full Government support. "We are looking at ultimately, when all these phases have been completed, we are looking at an initial injection of over US$1 billion and probably it will come to US$2 billion as we proceed," he said.

"It's not a small project. Much of what is there at Zisco won't be used and their engineers have proved that probably it is about 15 to 20 percent of what is there that they will be able to use. Much of it is no longer in a state to be used, so they are also going to bring in equipment and technology that will see this project starting.

"They are already working, but this is really in stages. There is lot of technical work to be done. There are number of engineers coming in different groups to look at the plant, but we believe that in the next 18 months we will be able to see the production of a million tonnes of steel."

Dr Bimha said R and F was not just interested in the rehabilitation of Zisco, but also expanding steel processing in the country, including production of stainless steel products.

Said Dr Bimha: "We have already agreed with them on their framework of the operation and they have had teams coming here for the past six months, engineers coming to do due diligence.

"We have had our team negotiating with them in China and also here. Our negotiating team was led by the chairman of Zisco Mr Nyasha Makuvise and a number of officials from various ministries. A month ago, I went to Guangzhou to represent Government in signing the agreement.

"What we were now doing is to look at how best to implement this project and today's visit was more of the president of R and F to pay a courtesy call on the President. There is a lot of work to be done in ensuring that we finalise on the implementation matrix.

"There is also a lot of work to be done in terms of getting a number of ministries and Government departments to make their contributions in making sure that this project becomes a success."

Dr Bimha said they had a meeting with Mines and Mining Development Minister Walter Chidhakwa who assured the Chinese investors of the availability of all the resources they would require.

He said another meeting was also held with Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa and Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Dr John Mangudya.

Dr Bimha said the deal was structured in a way that would ensure that the Chinese investors concentrated more on steel production.

"It's configured in a way that we would want the investors to focus more on steel making and we will hive off some of the subsidiaries of Zisco, which will allow other players to participate," he said.

"You have subsidiaries like Lancashire Steel, the coke ovens and a number of similar subsidiaries, these will be hived off so that the new company will concentrate more on steel making."

Dr Bimha allayed fears that the new project might fail to materialise the same way the Essar deal did.

"One of the reasons why the Essar deal did not come to fruition, I think the time that it was consummated was not the right environment," he said. "That time when we had an inclusive Government.

"This time around its different, the entire Government is supportive of this project and that is the reason for us to come here. The President is fully behind this project. Therefore, I think in terms of commitment, I think there is 100 percent from Government to make it a success.

"Also on the time when we felt Essar would come on board, they made reference to the depressed market for iron and steel products and they felt it was not the time for them to invest. They felt that because of the prices that were down they were not in a position to go around and borrow money.

"Now, this is not a problem as far as this investor is concerned. He did not express any problem with issue of prices, the market of funding, so we are confident that the investor is willing and able to get into this project and also the Government is supportive."

The Indian firm, Essar, pulled out of the Ziscosteel deal after commitment in 2011.

The deal, worth an estimated $750 million, was stalled by numeorus squabbles, including mineral rights, and other technicalities.

The then Minister of Industry and Commerce in the inlcusive Government Professor Welshman Ncube was also accused of bungling the Essar deal.

- chronicle

Tags: Zisco, Revival, Loan,
 0

You May Like These Videos

Comments

There are no comments.

Latest stories

Zimbabwe teachers demand salaries in US$

by newzimbabwe | 20 October 2018 | 45 Views

'Chamisa's Alliance plotted a coup against Mnangagwa'

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 53 Views

Demand for Indian sex sweets rises

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 45 Views

'Chamisa won't be contested at congress' - no vacancy in MDC presidium

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 48 Views

Mthuli Ncube calls for political reforms

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 49 Views

Mnangagwa's minister exposed charging in USD refuses Bond notes

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 39 Views

Zimsec engages Deloitte And Touch over exam leaks

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 37 Views

The White Man who sent fear down Mugabe's spine

by Globe and Mail | 20 October 2018 | 35 Views

Human rights violations down in Zimbabwe

by Stephen Jakes | 20 October 2018 | 27 Views

Mliswa pleads with Finance minister to see importance of MPs vehicles

by Stephen Jakes | 20 October 2018 | 21 Views

Electric Tesla car causes stir on Zimbabwe social media

by Staff Reporter | 20 October 2018 | 33 Views

Zimbabwe army officers warned

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 37 Views

Biti savages Mthuli Ncube

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 33 Views

Zanu-PF backers justify army use of deadly force

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 31 Views

Zimbabwe tax system hit by low compliance levels

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 26 Views

Price controls, tinkering with the deck while the titanic is sinking

by Jacob Mafume, MDC National Spokesperson | 19 October 2018 | 196 Views

Man nearly killed over cooking oil

by Simbarashe Sithole | 19 October 2018 | 184 Views

Mnangagwa closing in on unscrupulous businesspeople

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 199 Views

Prophet sells congregant's vehicle

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 165 Views

Zanu-PF's Dexter Nduna confirmed Chegutu West MP

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 114 Views

Mnangagwa caps 1719 graduands

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 87 Views

ZCTU calls for resignation of Minister Gumbo

by Stephen Jakes | 19 October 2018 | 242 Views

Mnangagwa has to deliver and, urgently too

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 252 Views

Zanu-PF dictatorship, ideological dominance

by Vivid Gwede | 19 October 2018 | 169 Views

ZCTU, why spare Bulawayo council over rates hike

by Conway Tutani | 19 October 2018 | 156 Views

Motlanthe Commission risks playing into Zanu-PF agenda

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 208 Views

Councils challenged to generate own income

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 136 Views

Zimbabwe gender parity misses 50% mark, says Mohadi

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 99 Views

Zanu-PF official, sangoma jailed over pangolin scales

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 160 Views

Mliswa mocks Gender Commission

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 144 Views

Police harass senior Masvingo journalist

by Stephen Jakes | 19 October 2018 | 128 Views

Zimbabwe gold exports decline by 21%

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 149 Views

Zimbabwe drops in World Economic Forum rankings

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 162 Views

Village Inn exonerates Supa Mandiwanzira

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 123 Views

Zimbabwe army killings probe hots up

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 148 Views

Mthuli Ncube's 2% tax sparks confusion

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 125 Views