Chlo­ride Zim clocks 100% ca­pac­ity util­i­sa­tion

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Business -

BAT­TERY man­u­fac­turer Chlo­ride Zim­babwe is now op­er­at­ing at 100 per­cent ca­pac­ity af­ter its new $3 mil­lion plant came into op­er­a­tion. Chlo­ride Zim­babwe is a wholly owned sub­sidiary of ART Cor­po­ra­tion.

ART Cor­po­ra­tion chair­man Dr Thomas Utete Wushe said Statu­tory In­stru­ment 64 of 2016 was one of the fac­tors that had con­trib­uted to the com­pany’s ca­pac­ity util­i­sa­tion rise.

“When we ap­proached the Min­istry of In­dus­try and Com­merce for an in­cu­ba­tion pe­riod our ca­pac­ity was at 70 per­cent, and since the Min­istry in­cluded bat­ter­ies un­der the pop­u­lar Statu­tory In­stru­ment 64 we are now op­er­at­ing at 100 per­cent ca­pac­ity.

“The new plant is an in­vest­ment of $3 mil­lion in bat­tery­mak­ing equip­ment that was sourced from South Korea through a three-year fi­nance fa­cil­ity ar­ranged by our ma­jor share­holder,” he said.

He was speak­ing at the com­mis­sion­ing of the plant this morn­ing. Ear­lier this year, the Govern­ment gazetted SI-64 of 2016 which re­moved more goods that are lo­cally avail­able from Open Gen­eral Im­port Li­cence ex­emp­tion.

The over­all ob­jec­tive is to sup­port the lo­cal frag­ile in­dus­try from un­fair com­pe­ti­tion, that way fa­cil­i­tat­ing em­ploy­ment cre­ation and gross do­mes­tic prod­uct (GDP) growth.

And the se­lec­tion of goods that now re­quire im­port li­cence — in­clud­ing bat­ter­ies — was done af­ter thor­ough as­sess­ment of ca­pac­ity of re­spec­tive firms’ abil­ity to sup­ply. Chlo­ride Zim eyes ex­ports into the re­gion The chair­man added that to the ex­tent that the new plant had boosted bat­tery out­put to be­yond lo­cal mar­ket re­quire­ment, the com­pany was now tar­get­ing to com­mence ex­ports into the re­gion.

“The im­pact of this in­vest­ment is the in­crease of pro­duc­tion by al­most 50 per­cent. Be­fore the in­vest­ment what we saw was a fac­tory that was pro­duc­ing 240 000 bat­ter­ies per an­num and now we have moved up to pro­duc­tion ca­pac­ity of 360 000 bat­ter­ies per year.

“We es­ti­mate that the cur­rent mar­ket de­mand is at 300 000 bat­ter­ies per an­num.

“What then hap­pens to the 60 000 bat­ter­ies? This is where we are go­ing to take them into the re­gional mar­kets.

“We will take the 60 000 into mar­kets in Zam­bia, Malawi, Mozam­bique and other parts of the re­gion,” he said.

Chlo­ride Zim­babwe spe­cialises in the pro­duc­tion and dis­tri­bu­tion of Ex­ide and Ex­press lead acid bat­ter­ies for the au­to­mo­tive in­dus­try.

The com­pany has since broad­ened its prod­uct range to in­clude other brands such as Ex­ide Pre­mium, Del­tec and Su-Kam. — BH24

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