New steel plant to help Zim reduce imports – Minister Gumbo

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Mvuma (New Ziana) – The establishment of the Dinson Iron and Steel Company (Disco), a carbon and steel plant in Manhize, Mvuma will result in the reduction of steel imports, a cabinet minister has said.

Speaking after touring Dinson, Minister for Presidential Affairs and Monitoring Implementation of Government Programmes and Projects Dr Joram Gumbo said due to the closure of Zimbawe Iron and Steel Company in 2008, the country has been spending over US$400 million annually on steel imports.

He said the demand for steel and steel products has increased exponentially due to the general boom in the construction sector and the focus on infrastructure development and rehabilitation since the advent of the Second Republic.

“The steel manufacturing plant being established here is therefore expected to lead to a significant reduction in steel imports,” he said.

Dr Gumbo said indications were that there is remarkable progress in setting up the requisite infrastructure for the project.

He applauded Tsingshan Holdings, Dinson’s parent company for channeling over US$1 billion towards the establishment of the steel plant, which is set to be the biggest steel producer in Southern Africa.

“The project will benefit the community through employment creation, skills transfer and community development,” he said.

Dr Gumbo said he was glad that the company intends to do a number of corporate social responsibility programmes like construction of shops, a police station, clinic as well as drilling of boreholes.

“I need to emphasize that surrounding communities should benefit from your mining activities in the form of improved infrastructure and other critical social amenities,” he said.

Dinson, a subsidiary of China’s Tsingshan Holding Group Company Limited, has signed a joint venture with ZESA Holdings for the construction of a transmission power line from Sherwood in Kwekwe to the Steel Plant which will provide a lasting solution to power cuts currently bedevilling the company.

Dr Gumbo said the government is committed to providing an enabling operating environment including the necessary incentives to ensure the success of the project such as granting National Project Status.

On full production, the integrated project that comprises a carbon and steel plant, an iron ore mine, and a ferrochrome plant is poised to produce 1.2 million tonnes of iron and steel a year.
New Ziana

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