Mozambique’s Mozal smelter expansion on course, but electricity is needed

Diversified mining house BHP Billiton is in talks with Mozambican authorities about the expansion of its Mozal aluminium smelter, with electricity availability seen as the main constraint.

General manager Carlos Mesquita said a feasibility study on the expansion had been completed and BHP Billiton was in talks with the authorities on how and when to proceed with the US$500-million (ZAR3.05-billion) project that would boost aluminum production to 750,000 tons a year from 540,000 tons.

“Mozal is ready to start the third phase. The site is already prepared. The only constraint we have now is power availability”, said Mesquita.

The shortage of additional electric power capacity was a major handicap, he said, adding that Mozal already used four times the country’s national average consumption.

“We are discussing with the Mozambique government the various options and a possible solution for the energy that is required for the extension, but we are confident that we will achieve good results”, he said.

“From the moment the energy is available, the expansion project will start and could come on stream in two to three years”. The existing Mozal smelter requires about 1,000 megawatts (MW) of electricity produced in South Africa.

Mozal launched operations in September 2000 producing 250,000 tons of primary aluminium a year. It doubled production with the completion of a phase two expansion project. Mozal has sparked significant gains for Mozambique, helping economic growth average just under 10% in the last five years.

Mozal and petrochemical firm Sasol’s US$1.2-billion natural gas plant have been described by the government as “mega projects” and seen by analysts as a boost to one of Africa’s poorest, yet fastest growing, economies.

Mozal is located in Beluluane, about 20 kilometres from Maputo. The settlement is growing into an industrial park fuelled by Mozal’s monthly spending of about US$11-million on local products and services.

“We have invested US$7.1-million to bring the gas pipeline to Mozal so the industrial free zone now has electricity, land, infrastructure and gas”, Mesquita said.

About 1,150 employees, 94% of whom are Mozambicans, work for Mozal. BHP Billiton owns 47% of the smelter, Japan’s Mitsubishi owns 25%, the Industrial Development Corporation has 24% and Mozambique 4%.

Source: IOL Business Report

Yukon Services Despachos Aduaneiros Clearing Agent Blog

Top Website | http://www.yukonservice.com | greg@yukonservice.com
Our Preferred Clearing Agents | Best Car Clearing Agent Japan | Preferred Logistic and Forwarding Agent | Offices in Maputo, Frigo Matola, Kilometer 4, Beira, Nacala, Numpula, Pemba, Approved customs agents for import/export procedures | Customs clearance | Ressano Garcia | Goba |

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s