South Valley Cement to complete coal shift scheme in mid-year

Egypt’s South Valley Cement is planning to complete its coal conversion plan by mid 2016, general manager Ahmed Ibrahim told Amwal Al Ghad Tuesday.

The Egyptian official further said the conversion to coal as an alternative energy source would cost around 200 million Egyptian pounds (US$ 25.5 million).

South Valley Cement will need to import around 230,000 tonnes of coal per year to operate its plant in Beni Suef, south of Cairo, Ibrahim added. The conversion scheme was undertaken by a major Chinese firm.

The company’s total investments in Egypt are estimated at 2.5 billion pounds, the official said, adding that it aims to boost its market share to 6 percent.

Several of Egypt’s major cement producers have begun retrofitting their plants to run on energy from imported coal, beating energy shortages that have curbed industrial output in the past four years.

In April 2014, Egypt’s Cabinet agreed to allow coal to be imported for use in electricity generation and cement publication.