Sino Zim plans to take on cotton farming

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2014-10-07 17:00:00 – Zimbabwe

Sino Zimbabwe Cotton are currently in negotiations with a local company with an intention to purchase of at least 35 000 hectares of land because they are intending to venture into cotton farming. But Sino Zim is going to continue funding contract farming.

The company plans to increase cotton seed and lint output to 35 000 metric tonnes at its $17 million plant commissioned by President Robert Mugabe in December last year hence its decision to venture into cotton farming.

Sino Zim Cotton chief operating officer Mr Thomas Meke said that the company is looking at exploring opportunities that enhance its presence on the local market.

Sino Zim purchased new spring reels and weavings for the plant with the idea of increasing the current capacity of 25 000 tonnes of cotton seed and beneficiation by 17 percent.

Sino Zim is also in the process of installing new equipment to increase capacity and beneficiation and so far the company has successfully purchased spring reels and weavers from a local company, Scotto. They are also finalising a lease agreement with Scotto on the possibility of using the premises where the weaving plant is currently situated to avoid dismantling it.

Sino Zim needs about $1,5 million to recapitalise though the company is currently using internal resources to fund its operations.

The company is bringing in new equipment at the plant because they are optimistic of achieving good results at the end of the current selling season.

The company has also lined up projects at the milling and spinning plant to support value addition and beneficiation in the cotton industry in support of the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation.

The plant's spinning division is promoting value addition through production of high quality yarn for both domestic and international markets in Africa, Asia and Europe.

The company is looking at doubling its 30 000 spinners capacity depending on the supply of cotton in the country.

Mr Meke remains confident of positive results despite the prevailing challenges of side marketing being done by some of the farmers contracted to the company.

He said companies that did not take part in providing inputs to farmers are now at the forefront of dictating prices, creating an uneven playing field.

The company was established in May 2010 as a joint venture company between Zimbabwe and China. The company's primary objective is to promote cotton production and ensuring farmers have equal and free access to high quality inputs at viable and sustainable prices.

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