Hima Cement plant due to open in May

KAMPALA, Uganda-Cement maker Hima Cement is expected to start production on its $40m (Shs144b) plant by the first week of May, ahead of planned production start date of June, company officials have said.

The cement make which broke ground on its Tororo District plant in January last year has been able to move ahead of schedule and will commission the plan in May which will in part try to address the current cement price crisis that has hit the country.

Mr Nicola George the Hima Cement country Chief executive while speaking on the side-lines of a medical camp held in Tororo said the price of cement is a complex situation.

“It is not the producers increasing the price but it’s the full distribution channel that has been impacted,” he said. Mr George said the cement producers have been experiencing some challenges which have cause stoppage because of power and raw material supply which are affecting the volumes.

“This today is causing the price to go up because our customers’ distributors and retailers don’t get enough volumes so they have to recover the margins by increasing the price,” he explains.

However, he said they are working very hard to have their new 0.8 million metric tonnes plant running ahead of schedule by first week of May to answer all these challenges of volume.

He also said that in order for them to also actually start in May, they will need government to also issue them a quarry mining license which they applied for to allow them get polosano an important ingredient in the production of cement.

He said if they do not receive the license early enough, then they might not be able to start production by May as they have planned.

The new Hima plant has a capacity of 800 metric tonnes per year, and this will add in to the already existing capacity. So starting in May they will have a production capacity of 1.6 million tonnes a year.