The Sunday News
Fairness Moyana in Hwange
A CHINESE firm, Tutu Investments, operating in Hwange has put in place plans to set up a coal-coke chemical production value chain expected to come online by 2020.
In an interview, Tutu Investments director Mr David Zhou said the company which is already constructing a coke oven battery in Hwange is set to undertake the coal and coal washing project that will produce an estimated 500 000 tonnes of coking coal.
The company which is a subsidiary of JinAn, the second largest Ferrochrome producer in Zimbabwe recently took over Chilota Coalfields in Hwange under Sunrise Chilota and is set to venture into underground mining.
“The underlying concept is to set up a coal-coke -chemical production value chain. Sunrise Chilota will undertake the coal and coal washing projects, mining an estimated 500 000 tonnes of coking coal using underground state-of-the-art mine designs and methods that are in line with international best practice for maximum safety, environmental protection and efficiency,” said Mr Zhou.
He said in the second year after the project has kicked off, production will increase to 2 million tonnes of coking coal.
“Tutu will produce 300 000 tonnes of coking coal from the coke oven battery, exporting 70 percent of the material, employing at least 300 local people. The coke oven battery will produce 90 million cubic centimetres of gas annually, inclusive of 300 000 tonnes of gas coke, a coal tar plant is on site and will produce 50 000 tonnes annually.”
The whole production chain is expected to be ready for use within the first quarter of 2020 after the coke oven battery has been installed and commissioned, the company said.
The firm is one of the 10 new projects that have since been granted special coal mining grants by the Government as part of efforts to bolster economic growth while contributing towards the attainment of a US$12 billion dollar coal mining sector by 2023.
Mines and Mining Development Minister, Winston Chitando who also toured the construction phase of the battery recently expressed confidence that the country was on course to achieving the $12 billion mining industry by 2023.