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MEI Online: Plant Operation News: Africa: July 13th 2007


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:: Zambia to Spend $74m to Upgrade Lime Producer

Zambia's major lime producer for its vast copper and cobalt mines will upgrade equipment and construct a new kiln to boost lime production at a cost of $74-million, the firm said on Friday.

Ndola Lime chairman Joseph Chikolwa said the firm would construct primary crusher unit, conveyor system and limestone blending facilities in addition to carrying out major upgrades at the plant in Ndola, 300 km north of the capital Lusaka.

Chikolwa said in a statement that the recapitalisation project would involve the replacement of the rotary kiln which has been in operation since 1972.

"It will also include the placement of the old lime hydration plant installed in 1962... this will increase hydrated lime production from 30 000 t to 118 000 t a year, which will meet current and the forecast growth in demand for this product," Chikolwa said.

Chikolwa said the Ndola Lime would also raise to 900 tonnes per day the production of quicklime from the current 500 tonnes each day once the upgrades were completed within 22 months starting from July.

Chikolwa said the lack of investment had created a shortage of lime for copper mines, Zambia's economic mainstay.

Lime is used by Zambia's copper mines to process copper and cobalt. The mines are a major foreign exchanger for the southern African country of 11,7-million people and are also a major employer.

Ndola Lime was initially due to be privatised but Chikolwa said the government had changed its earlier position and would retain the firm.




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