Zimchem Refiners targets improved capacity utilisation 

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By Staff Reporter

REDCLIFF-based tar and chemical manufacturer Zimchem Refiners is targeting an increased capacity utilisation from the current 600 tonnes to at least 2000 tonnes of tar per month.

The company’s General Manager Tendai Shoko said to achieve this the company requires a constant supply of critical raw materials.

In recent years, Zimchem has been dogged by challenges in acquiring raw materials.

“We would like to increase our capacity utilisation level from the current levels which are below 20% to above 50%. For us to be able to do this we need a constant supply of the raw materials from the local raw material suppliers,” he said.

The senior executive added that Zimchem has markets within the SADC region in countries such as Zambia and South Africa.

However, the company has been failing to effectively supply its markets due to challenges in acquiring raw materials.

Zimchem used to rely on Ziscosteel for its raw materials, however, the closure of the company saw it struggling, a situation which has hurt its operations.

“We do have a market in South Africa and Zambia as well as the local market. However,  we are failing to meet the demand of this market, we will need the government to be able to inject some working capital into the company so that we will have sufficient stocks in our plant so that we meet all the orders coming from our customers,” he said.

At its peak, Zimchem had a capacity utilisation of 4000 tonnes of tar per month.

“Our capacity utilisation is 4000 tonnes of tar per month but we are barely processing 600 tonnes of tar per month that’s where the working capital will be coming,” he said.