via Chinese firm awarded NewZim Steel tender – DailyNews Live 24 September 2014
HARARE – Indian firm Essar Africa Holdings Limited (Essar) and Zimbabwe government have awarded a tender to refurbish NewZim Steel’s – formerly Zisco Steel – plant to an undisclosed Chinese firm.
Essar acquired a 54 percent stake in the government owned Redcliff-based steel maker in November 2011 under a $750 million deal.
Abigail Shoniwa, Industry and Trade secretary, said the corroded state of the giant iron processor’s plant and equipment stalled its operationalization.
“The plant has deteriorated further than we had initially thought and we have had to revise the initial business plan to incorporate the extensive refurbishment,” she told Parliament yesterday.
“…a Chinese company has been given a contract to design and manufacture new equipment,” she said.
Shoniwa noted that while there have been delays in implementing the multi-million dollar deal, mostly over transfer of mineral rights, for nearly four years, “progress is slowly taking place”.
“The delays have been frustrating the government, the investor and workers as well, but certain things are happening behind the scenes,” she said.
Recently, Industry minister Mike Bimha said 70 percent of NewZim Steel’s machinery is obsolete and re-starting production requires new ones.