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Manhize steel Plant to start production

by Staff reporter
07 Mar 2024 at 00:04hrs | Views
THE majority of critical infrastructure at the US$1,5 billion Dinson Iron and Steel Company (Disco) steel plant in Manhize near Mvuma in the Midlands province has been successfully installed with the investor putting final touch-up ahead of project commissioning.

The giant steel plant is touted to be among Africa's biggest integrated steelworks, being built by Disco, one of the three local subsidiaries of China's global stainless steel producer, Tsingshan Holdings Group Limited.

The group also owns Dinson Colliery in Hwange in Matebeleland North and a ferrochrome plant, Afrochine Smelting Limited, in Selous.

The iron and steel investment positions Zimbabwe among the ranks of global steel manufacturing hubs, with projections indicating the country's potential to emerge as a future powerhouse in the steel and iron industry.

Disco is projected to produce 600 000 metric tonnes of products in the first phase rising to 1,2 million tonnes in the second phase then 3,2 million tonnes in the third phase and ultimately five million tonnes per year in the final phase, earning  the country millions of dollars in foreign currency.

Disco public relations manager, Mr Joseph Shoko, said by the end of the first quarter, they will be starting the first production of pig iron and then move to production of steel billets in the second quarter.Zisco

He said the completion of the blast furnace superstructure and the availability of power are critical steps before the commencement of production.

"As of yesterday, the sintering plant was 100 percent complete, the blast furnace 98 percent, the power plant 100 percent, the oxygen plant 95 percent and the workshop 100 percent," said Mr Shoko in an interview.

He said the construction of a power line from Sherwood in Kwekwe is underway and is scheduled to be completed by the end of April.

"There are 1 500 employees to expedite the construction of the plant," said Mr Shoko.

The mega-investment project encompasses the establishment of a Smart City to be called Manhize Town and also a Science University.

It paves the way for the beneficiation and value addition of steel production, which will accelerate and drive the province's economy high up the value chain with massive spin-offs for the entire country and the region.

Other products that the company will eventually produce include pipes, bolts and nuts, smaller slags, rolled tubes, fences, shafts, wires, and bars, among others.

Preliminary estimates suggest that net revenues are expected to hit US$10 million during the first phase and will rise to US$4,25 billion under phase four of production.

In terms of employment, Disco expects to directly employ 3 000 workers in the first phase with the figure expected to rise to over 10 000 in the fourth phase of production.

Disco has also signed a memorandum of understanding with the Government to undertake refurbishment and construction of a 1 000km long railway line to provide a dedicated, reliable, uninterrupted and efficient railway line to carry the company's products for local and export-imports routes through Mozambique.

Since the closure of the Zimbabwe Iron and Steel Company (Zisco) in 2008, Zimbabwe has been spending nearly US$1 billion annually on importing iron and steel-related products from abroad.

The establishment of the steelworks will see the launch of a number of infrastructural projects such as road and rail networks, and a dam to provide water for domestic use, irrigation and industrial operations at the plant.

An irrigation project is also on the cards in line with the Second Republic's thrust of stimulating production across all sectors of the economy as enshrined in the NDS1 towards an upper middle-income economy by 2030.

Source - The Chronicle