Lloyd Gumbo Senior Reporter
A delegation of technocrats from Dangote Industries Limited, owned by Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, is expected in Zimbabwe next week to conclude details of his investment in Zimbabwe.
Mr Dangote, who has a net worth of over $18 billion according to Forbes Magazine, has already announced his decision to invest in power generation, coal mining and cement manufacturing.
The Zimbabwe Investment Authority (ZIA) has already licensed Mr Dangote’s group.
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Secretary for Mines and Mining Development Professor Francis Gudyanga told The Herald yesterday that they expected to conclude the details of the deals next week.
“There are three areas that we are engaging them on and these are limestone, coal and gypsum,” said Prof Gudyanga.
“We have proposals that we want to give to them when they come next week in terms of how their investment will be done here.
“We have already given them areas with limestone, coal and gypsum that we think they will be happy with. So we are waiting for their feedback when they come next week. So their visit is mainly for finalising the deals.”
Prof Gudyanga said if everything goes according to plan, the delegation was expected to then announce when they intend to start operations in Zimbabwe.
He said Mr Dangote’s investment would play a major role in economic development in Zimbabwe.
“The investment is huge because it involves employment creation, capital injection into the economy as well as impacting on downstream industries. There is definitely going to be a lot of multiplier effects.
“If they are happy with everything, we expect that the delegation will be able to tell us when they can start operations,” said Prof Gudyanga.
Several other delegations from Mr Dangote’s company have been to Zimbabwe for negotiations that resulted in ZIA licensing the group to operate in Zimbabwe.
Dangote Group has a vast business empire that spans manufacturing, logistics and power generation in several African countries, including Zambia where it has established a $400 million cement manufacturing plant.
Mr Dangote’s investment deals will be a major boost to the economy as they are coming at a time when Zimbabwe has sealed several other mega-deals with China after reciprocal State visits between President Mugabe and his Chinese counterpart, President Xi Jinping, in August 2014 and December 2015 respectively.
The deals are being implemented under the country’s economic blueprint, Zim-Asset.
President Mugabe recently presented a 10-Point Plan meant to set the country on a massive economic recovery path in line with the Zim-Asset targets.
The 10-Point Plan cuts across all the key economic enablers and puts to the fore, value addition and beneficiation of the country’s mineral resources.
Government ministries have already started the implementation of the plan by mooting several mega projects that are set to significantly contribute to the fiscus and employment creation.