BY STYLE REPORTER
Seke Constituency recently received a major boost after an Indian-owned company officially opened a cooking oil refinery plant with hundreds of people expected to benefit from employment creation among other things.
Internationally acclaimed Mount Meru Millers, will be producing the Sun Soya cooking oil at their state-of-the-art factory in Manyame District.
The project will also see local farmers benefitting from Soya bean production, a major raw material in the extraction of cooking oil by the company.
The official opening of the plant attracted the who-is-who in industry and government departments among them provincial affairs minister Applonia Munzverengwi, top officials from Affirmative Action Group in the province and Indian Ambassador to Zimbabwe.
Speaking on the sidelines of the event, AAG Mashonaland East provincial vice chairperson Lincoln Matare said they are happy to have such investments in the province.
“This is a special moment for us as we are celebrating together the immense contribution Mount Meru Millers is contributing to the economy of Zimbabwe with special reference to Mashonaland East Province. We applaud them for such a positive development as this creates employment and brings convenience to consumers,” he said.
“We implore all idle industries to get their momentum in shape and resuscitate their past glory. Subsequently, we are castigating some companies mining black granite in the province that are not empowering our communities and exporting raw products instead of doing the same as finished products.”
Matare appealed to government to double efforts on ease of doing business to attract more investors in the country.
“The business sector is seized with few challenges in the country that include contracting demand owing to low disposable incomes. The economy has however witnessed positive strides because of the Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP) implemented in 2018 by the new dispensation. We appeal to government to continuously double efforts on ease of doing business, which will make Zimbabwe a destination of choice for both local and direct foreign direct investments,” he said.
Speaking at the event, Munzverengwi said the opening up of industries has increased the province’s GDP which is in line with Vision 2030 demands.
“I am happy that a lot is happening in this province in as far as development is concerned. President Emmerson Mnangagwa recently commissioned the Muchekeranwa Dam project in Marondera District among other projects. We are open to any meaningful investment. In as far as GDP contribution is concerned, Mashonaland East is number three in the country after Bulawayo and Harare,” she said.
About 250 people will be employed at the new oil plant with the cooking oil hitting the local shelves this week.
Mount Meru Millers Zimbabwe Chief Finance Officer Satyavrat Kati said they injected US$20 million into the project and will be buying soya beans from local farmers in the future.
“The most important thing is the corporate responsibility issue.We have been doing this in other countries like Uganda. We are currently importing soya from other Sadc countries. We will soon engage local farmers to supply us with the raw material,” he said.
Mount Meru Millers is a subsidiary of the Mount Meru Group, a business conglomerate headquartered in Dubai, UAE, with operations in Downstream Petroleum Business, Manufacturing of Edible Oils, LPG, Lubricants, Infrastructure (Real Estate), and Logistics.