Business

Carib Cement to operate gypsum Halberstadt Quarry within a month

BY SHAMILLE SCOTT Business reporter scotts@jamaicaobserver.com

Friday, March 07, 2014    

Print this page Email A Friend!


CARIBBEAN Cement Company hopes to start using a gypsum quarry that has been dormant for four decades, within a month.

The Halberstadt Quarry will supply the company's cement plant with the gypsum needed for the production of ordinary portland and blended cements.

The company has already received an environmental permit with stipulated conditions from the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA).

Of course, becoming operational is subject to receiving other necessary approvals such as a mining licence from the Commissioner of Mines.

"I really can't definitively say when we will start, but I hope to start within a month," said Anthony Haynes, general manager of Caribbean Cement.

Even so, the company has only about three months' supply of gypsum in its inventory that it has been using for cement production locally.

The overall objective is to also produce gypsum to meet the demand of its parent company, Trinidad Cement Limited (TCL) Group.

There has been an uptick in cement sales locally, and Haiti has been doing well as an export market.

For the year ended December 31, 2013 the company posted $594.7 million in local cement sales up from $536.3 million in the corresponding period in the prior year or an 11 per cent increase, while export was six per cent higher during the year under review, up from $218.7 million year over year. The company improved its bottom line and posted a profit of $113.9 million, compared to a loss of $3.3 billion in the prior year.

Trinidad Cement currently meets a demand for 1.7 million tonnes of cement, and the gypsum content accounts for about five per cent or 90,000 tonnes of that, while Caribbean Cement contributes 45 per cent to the total group, Haynes told Caribbean Business Report.

More specifically, the one hectare of land at the Halberstadt Quarry is expected to produce 42,000 tonnes for export to Trinidad and Tobago as well as Barbados, while 48,000 tonnes would be for local use.

At these levels of production and based on the "proven" reserves, the life of the quarry is expected to be 33 to 50 years. An exploration drilling programme was conducted by NHL Engineering and based on the laboratory results, the average content of the gypsum there is approximately 52 per cent, according to the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) published last October

The Halberstadt Quarry is located towards the eastern boundary of St Andrew, less than a kilometre west of St Thomas, said the EIS. It is reportedly approximately 1.5 km north and 1.2 km northeast of Salt Spring and Bito, St Andrew, respectively.

The project will involve repair and modification of access roads to Halberstadt, including the Salt Spring and Benoa to Halberstadt roadways. Additionally, the Salt Spring parochial road will be reopened for the transport of material from the quarry to storage.

Haynes said the company has already started road development works, in collaboration with residents of the surrounding community, looking at drainage and settling plots. He now awaits final approval to begin extracting limestone.

He said: "Creating employment for people in neighbouring communities is a mission of the company and in everything we do, we involve them."

It is anticipated that the mining activities at Halberstadt will employ 40 people, including permanent, casual and contractual employees.

ADVERTISEMENT

POST A COMMENT

HOUSE RULES

 

1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper – email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy



comments powered by Disqus
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Poll

Did the NWC prepare adequately for the current drought?
Yes
No


View Results »


ADVERTISEMENT

Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon
ADVERTISEMENT