Tanzania: local cement producers told to submit complaints to government
The Minister for Industry, Trade and Investment, Charles Mwijage, has advised local cement producers to present their complaints to the government as they are committed to sort out constraints in doing businesses.
“Let’s reason together so that we can build our case that I can defend to the government,” he said at the inauguration of Tanga Cement second clinker manufacturing line at Pongwe area in Tanga Region yesterday.
The management of the Tanga Cement Company had complained to the government about influx of cheap imported cement products in the market which was subjecting local cement producers to unfair competition and decision by the government to ban coal imports that was making the cement factory incur extra costs for thermal power to run their turbines.
Swart said they were also concerned that they had outstanding concessions agreed with the Tanzania Investment Centre (TIC) in 2012 but were not yet put in government gazette, raising questions on government sincerity in upholding investment agreements.
He said they were appealing to the government to ensure that local producers were contracted to supply cement in large infrastructure projects to boost their revenue.
The 152 million US dollar new clinker manufacturing line at Pongwe installed by a Chinese company is expected to boost clinker production capacity from 500,000 tonnes to 1.52 million tonnes per year which will be used for cement production and excess to be exported.
The Chairman of the Board of Directors, Lawrence Masha, said as local producers they did not see the reason for allowing imports of cement while local production is above the market demand. According to him, local installed capacity was 8.3 million tonnes of cement while demand was at around 4.3 million tonnes. He said they expected the competitive landscape to remain challenging, and hope that the playing fields will be levelled somewhat with the government’s introduction of higher tariffs on imported cement.