Ghacem, the nation’s leading cement manufacturer, will in the coming weeks, cut sod for the construction of a 1.5-million-ton capacity cement production plant in Kumasi to serve the Ashanti Region and its surrounding areas.
Speaking in an interview with the media, Managing Director of GHACEM, Stefano Gallini, said the new project had become necessary due to the growing demand for cement in that part of the country. Additionally, the Tema and Takoradi factories will be expanded to improve efficiency and timely delivery of products.
Mr. Gallini observed that “the Ghanaian construction sector growth is the driving force behind this agenda and our Ghanaian customers are at the center of this”. He further noted that “we want to continue taking care of the Ghanaian market and as you may be aware, there has been an exponential growth in commercial activities in which GHACEM has been involved, and we want to continue with our contribution for the nation’s development in this regard.”
The new plant will produce about 1.5 million tons of cement per annum to serve the Ashanti Region, together with future plans of exporting to Burkina Faso and other neighboring countries.
The $100 million investment by the company is expected to increase employment opportunities for the cement industry, as many more projects are being undertaken.
Commenting on prices of cement products, the Managing Director explained that the company will adjust the price of its cement products if the cost of raw materials and freight witness a reduction in the coming weeks.
He indicated that the recent hike in cement prices was as a result of the high costs incurred during production and increasing freight costs.
“We have been exposed to rising costs of raw materials, freight and other components in the production of our cement products for the past seven to eight months, such that we have to take care of it in order not to pass it over to the consumer, looking at the economic situation. However, we commit to adjusting the price downwards if the cost of freight is reduced. For us, other raw materials can be sourced at lower prices,” he noted.
He further assured that engagements are ongoing with the Ghana Port and Harbours Authority to address some concerns with port handling charges, which also add on to the cost of production of the company.
Mr. Gallini explained that about 99.5% of Ghacem employees are Ghanaian, and this goes a long way to benefit the country. Ghacem pays taxes to support the Ghanaian economy, and also reinvests some of her profits to various causes in Ghana.
Background of Ghacem
Ghacem was established in 1967, and has played an important role of building Ghana through more than 50 years. Ghacem has two cement grinding plants in Tema and Takoradi, and a network of sales offices and depots throughout the country.
Ghacem continues to contribute to the economic development in Ghana with adequate investment to meet the nation’s needs when it comes to cement production. From 2012 to 2015, Ghacem spent over 52 million Euros in expansion investment in Tema and Takoradi.
Ghacem is a corner stone of Ghana’s infrastructural development having played a part in major iconic monuments and buildings across Ghacem using Ghacem cement. These expansions work have improved the quality of Ghacem cement, reduced energy consumption at the plants, ensured efficient production and reduced environmental impact of the plant’s operations.