Zam­bezi Gas ex­ports to Zam­bia

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Business - Oliver Kazunga Se­nior Busi­ness Re­porter

MATA­BELE­LAND North-based Zam­bezi Gas has started ex­port­ing to Zam­bia and tar­gets vol­umes of about 10 000 tonnes of coal per month.

Zam­bezi Gas chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Mr Thomas Nher­era said the ex­ports fol­low the suc­cess­ful con­clu­sion of a deal with a ce­ment man­u­fac­tur­ing firm in the neigh­bour­ing coun­try.

“We’ve sealed an ex­port deal with a ce­ment man­u­fac­tur­ing plant which for now I can’t dis­close be­cause there are cer­tain con­fi­den­tial­i­ties that we’ve to main­tain un­til a cer­tain point.

“We’re start­ing by ex­port­ing 1 000 tonnes of coal peas and nuts per month. And go­ing for­ward that fig­ure will be im­proved to be­tween 5 000 and 10 000 tonnes a month,” he said.

Early this year, Zam­bezi Gas was pro­duc­ing 20 000 tonnes of coal per month and had tar­geted to in­crease out­put to 50 000 tonnes upon in­stal­la­tion of a $15 mil­lion coal pro­cess­ing plant.

Mr Nher­era said the plan to in­stall the equip­ment fell by the way side due to fund­ing chal­lenges re­sult­ing in the col­liery com­pany en­gag­ing a lo­cal con­trac­tor, Rock­drill, to un­der­take min­ing and coal pro­cess­ing ac­tiv­i­ties com­pli­ment­ing Zam­bezi Gas op­er­a­tions.

As a re­sult, Zam­bezi Gas, which also sup­plies the lo­cal mar­ket in en­ergy, agri­cul­ture and health sec­tors has in­creased coal out­put to 30 000 tonnes per month.

Mr Nher­era said by the end of the month coal pro­duc­tion at the col­liery would have reached the an­tic­i­pated 50 000 tonnes.

Zam­bezi Gas’ 19 000 hectare con­ces­sion is es­ti­mated to be hold­ing 200 mil­lion tonnes of coal re­serves.

Zim­babwe is en­dowed with vast re­serves of coal mainly in the north-west and south­ern parts.

Over the years, the Gov­ern­ment through the Min­istry of Mines and Min­ing Devel­op­ment has is­sued Spe­cial Grants to indige­nous in­vestors to un­der­take coal min­ing op­er­a­tions but a ma­jor­ity of the projects are still ly­ing idle.

The Min­istry of Mines and Min­ing Devel­op­ment has in­di­cated its in­ten­tion to re­pos­sess un­der­utilised min­ing claims un­der the “Use it-or-lose it” min­ing pol­icy. — @okazunga

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