Malawi will soon be able to save about $9 million from importation of clinker following the construction of two clinker factories by Shayona in Kasungu and Cement Products Limited Njereza Plant in Mangochi.
A mining and energy expert, Grain Malunga, made this observation in an interview in view of reports that the two factories are expected to start operating in the next two months.
Malunga said that the coming in of the two factories has energised the mining sector and the entire construction industry through provision of affordable cement products on the local market.
He says currently, Malawi imports about 300,000 metric tonnes of clinker from Zimbabwe, Mozambique and other countries annually, which translates to over $9 annually.
By producing the clinker locally, Malunga said the country stands to benefit from an import substitution of about $9 million, which he said can be used to import essential goods which are not manufactured locally.
“The economy of every country hinges on the availability of foreign currency. This can only be done if a country reduces imports while at the same time maximising exports. The construction of the two clinker factories will, therefore, help in that direction,” Malunga said.
He said that having clinker produced locally also presents an opportunity to boost other sectors such as limestone mining, coal mining and quarry stone manufacturing on top of creating jobs for Malawians.
The mining expert, however, said there is need for government to control the influx of foreign products on the local market to allow the local companies to start realising returns on their investments.
According to Cement Products Limited Managing director, Akbar Gaffar, the company’s clinker factory is expected to start operating by the end of August. The factory has a capacity of producing about 700 to 1,000 metric tonnes of clinker per day.
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