The Endowment Fund for Rehabilitation of Tigray (EFFORT) has contracted a Chinese engineering company— ECE Engineering Corporation—for the construction of the first ever PVC resin (Polyvinyl Chloride) manufacturing plant at cost of five billion birr (USD 250 million at current exchange rates) in Arato locality of Mekelle city, the capital of the Tigray Regional State.
The EPC contract that was signed yesterday at Sheraton Addis came after a long process of bidding starting from 2012. Ever since, the project has retendered a couple of times to finally land a contract with the ECE, which in turn agreed to deliver the project in time frame of 30 months starting from the commencement of the project.
The plant is estimated to have an installed capacity of 60,000 tons of PVC resin per year which varied in quality grading from SG1 to SG8. Apart from that, the chemical manufacturing complex would also have a host of other side production lines that includes Chlorine alkali plant, Vinyl Chloride Monomer (VCM) plant, PVC pant, water treatment plant, waste management plant and few others.
Azeb Mesfin, CEO of EFFORT and widow of the late Prime Minister, predicts that upon completion of the project the value that will be created would boost the overall net worth of the endowment conglomerate greatly.
PVC resin is one critical industrial chemical that is in great demand both domestically and abroad. According to experts, the chemical is strategic for manufacturers especially among plastic manufacturing plants in Ethiopia. Currently, a considerable foreign exchange is devoted to import this product, especially from oil producing countries as since it could also be made from distilled petroleum.
The solid form of PVC is highly employed in the contraction process as liquid pipe while liquid form is also useful for electric cable coating and related production processes.
Azeb said that the idea to establish the plant is that of her husband’s and that she is very happy to see the project coming to fruition. She also indicted that SUR and Mesfin Engineering will both have a role to play in the construction process and successful completion of the project.
The project site is known to be highly endowed with limestone which is key for PVC resin manufacturing plant.