The Herald (Zimbabwe)

Cement supply stabilises

- Mukudzei Chingwere Herald Reporter

THE cement supply situation in the country is normalisin­g following measures put in place by the Government to address reported shortages.

Informatio­n, Publicity and Broadcasti­ng Services Minister Dr Jenfan Muswere updated the country on the improving situation.

Early this month Cabinet approved the importatio­n of cement by individual­s and companies with free funds to curb the artificial cement shortage in the market and the spiralling prices.

This was against the massive infrastruc­ture developmen­t projects being undertaken by Government and other private players, particular­ly Government projects, cement shortages had affected some projection­s in terms of project completion, timelines and an increase in the cost of projects.

Importatio­n of cement was a preserve of those with requisite import permits, but the latest move by Government follows dishonest industry players accused of creating an artificial shortage to justify a steep increase of cement.

In some cases, a bag of cement was now being sold at US$20 up from an average of a local cost of US$9, this artificial shortage was threatenin­g to slow down the massive infrastruc­ture developmen­t projects being implemente­d in the country.

“Cabinet reports that PPC continues to supply the market, producing 120 000 tonnes per month,” said Dr Muswere.

“The price of cement is currently pegged at US$9,34 per 50kg bag to the retailers. Sino Cement Zimbabwe started to supply the market as at 21st November, 2023.

“The company is dispatchin­g 1 000 tonnes per day at a price of US$9,25 per 50kg bag. Sino Zimbabwe has imported 90 tonnes against an import licence of 1 000 tonnes.”

“Khaya Cement has also resumed operations. Furthermor­e, 713 companies have been allowed to import cement giving a total tonnage of 200 00 tonnes, of which 461 have collected the licences.

“Government continues to monitor the situation and the public will be kept abreast of the matter as it develops,” said Dr Muswere.

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