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Ziscosteel push for 2021 return

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BY TAURAI MANGUDHLA

STATE-run steel producer, Ziscosteel is moving to have some units running by the end of 2021, with a growth strategy already in motion, according to board chair Martin Manuhwa.

Zisco recently went on the market scouting for top management to run Buchwa Iron Mining Company (Bimco) and Lancashire Steel.

Bimco and Lancashire Steel are wholly owned by Zisco, as well as Zim Chem.

“As Zisco we can grow organically as we wait for investors to come on board, we are not stopping any rehabilitation or any studies.

“We are going and the investor can get (catch up with us). We are going to have a partnership model where government will retain some shareholding,” Manuhwa told NewsDay Business.

“We are not waiting because government has given us the go ahead to grow organically and that is why we have advertised for these posts,” he said.

Manuhwa said resumption of most operations would be seen by the end of 2021.

He said between US$500 million and US$1 billion would be required to bring the company to its former glory.

“In 2021 we are likely to see resumption of a lot of processes in terms of putting on board an investor and also growing organically especially at Lancashire Steel, ramping up production and also preparatory mine works and other studies towards reestablishment of the plant,” Manuhwa said.

“A lot of the designs, a lot of the contractual obligations and team building both in staff and investors and a new strategic and business plan should be finalised by the end of 2021 and we are likely to see a lot of activity and business this financial year. Anything between US$500 million and US$1 billion may take Zisco to a very sizeable capacity, in fact we may restore depending on the technology. What Cabinet has blessed us with is a resolution for us to grow organically and scout for a suitable investor which is in the process,” he said.

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