Zimasco resumes production

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By Staff Reporter

THE country’s biggest ferrochrome producer, Zimasco is set to resume production after the company had temporarily halted production in April this year.

Zimasco General Manager (Marketing and Administration) Clara Sadomba confirmed the development in an interview.

“We are restarting production for the fourth quarter as demand from our customers in the global marketplace is set to return in the fourth quarter going into quarter one for 2021. We are therefore restarting our furnaces as normal,” Sadomba said.

While the company is set to resume production, Sadomba added, “The cost challenges that face ferrochrome production in Zimbabwe have been well documented many times and we are hopeful that the authorities will assist the industry in dealing with these.”

In April this year, Zimasco said the company was halting operations after the effects of Covid-19 on its markets in Europe, Asia and China have had an adverse impact on their local operations.

“Please be advised that Zimasco will temporarily halt its smelting operations as a response of the curtailment/stoppages of stainless steel production that has happened in the mainly stainless steel making regions of Europe, Asia and China within the last few months.

“In efforts to slow down the spread of Covid-19, many governments have introduced severe restrictions which means that many stainless steel mills across the world have had to stop or significantly reduce production,” the company said then.

Zimasco’s Kwekwe smelter has an operational capacity of 180 000 tonnes of ferrochrome per year.

Zimbabwe has 15 ferrochrome operations concentrated mainly in the Midlands Province.

The country holds the world’s second largest known chrome ore deposits, after South Africa.