Shayona Cement Company managing director Jitendra Patel has said the expansion of its factory in Kasungu to be completed in 2017, will make the firm to be one of the biggest supplier of metric tonnes of cement in the country.
The company is in the second phase of constructing a $56 million (about K25 billion) rotary cement manufacturing plant, which will have a crusher, stacker reclaimer, raw mill, coal mill, pre-heater column, cooler, conveying systems and a central automated control room.
Patel said they started in 1997 with a rated production capacity of 100 metric tonnes per day from 250 kilns employing less than 100 people, but production has now increased steadily.
“Our production capacity has grown to 400 tons per day while clinker production capacity and a grinding unit is now rated 650 tons per day and we are offering employment to 1 200 people,” he said after a tour of the factory on Monday by Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining Bright Msaka.
“After completion of the second phase of construction, we will be producing 1 200 metric tonnes of cement per day, which will be enough to supply the whole country and the surplus will be exported to neighbouring countries.”
In his remarks, Msaka said Shayona is a good example of how mining can transform rural areas while at the same time contributing to the economic growth of the country.
“Shayona Cement factory is yet another milestone in the history of mining in Malawi. Mining is one of the key priority sectors that can significantly contribute to the socio-economic development of the country as envisioned in the current Malawi Growth and Development strategy (MGDS).
“Government will continue supporting well meaning enterprises such as Shayona to ensure that we make strides in our development efforts,” he said.
Msaka said by increasing production to 1 200 metric tonnes per day, the company will help government save foreign exchange since the surplus cement will be exported, which will also help to reduce imports of the product.
The minister promised to help Shayona have uninterrupted power supply since they are second highest user of the Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) power and to have the 27 kilometre earth road to the factory improved.