Musanze: Locals upbeat over new cement plant

Jobseekers in Musanze District have reason to smile after construction works for a new cement factory began Thursday. It is expected to create 2000 jobs.

The plant was launched by Milbridge Group through its local firm Prime Cement at the newly established industrial zone located in Kimonyi Sector, Musanze District.

Speaking to The New Times after the groundbreaking ceremony, Fancesco De Martino, the Chief Executive Officer of Milbridge Group, said that within a year the new cement plant will be functional and promised the creation of new jobs, specifically for the local residents of different capacities.

“This plant will be able to create up to 2000 jobs, directly and indirectly,” he said.

“Immediately after construction, we will need people to start to work with us, we will immediately create new jobs. We will create 600 new permanent jobs,” he said.

On what pushed Milbridge Group to invest in Rwanda, Fancesco noted the political stability and good leadership that eases doing business.

He said: “Rwanda is a stable country with a very stable political situation, the economy is growing very impressively and we were supported by local authorities such as the Governor, and even the President”.

Beside the creation of new jobs, Milbridge Group CEO explained that Prime Cement looks forward to using modern technology in a move to compete and win the cement market both locally and regionally.

“For what we see, the market is still not completely satisfied. But even if we meet strong competition, we really think that we have the most modern technology that will allow us to be more efficient. We are using technology that is coming from Germany, and it is green technology to mean there is no impact on the environment,” Fancesco De Martino

He added that construction works will be completed within the next 12 months stressing that the plant will be able to produce 600 tonnes of cement per year during the first phase which is expected to increase to 1.2 million tonnes during the second phase.

The local communities welcomed the plant saying it would help improve their day-to-day life.

“With this new factory, our lives will change for the better as we will be given jobs. I personally expect a lot from a job that I have been given after a long time of job hunting,” said Benjamin Muhirwa.

The Governor of Northern Province, Jean Marie Vianney Gatabazi, told The New Times that having a cement plant in Musanze District will help fast-track the country’s development, particularly by boosting local communities’ livelihood as well as the local infrastructure.

“We are going to build Musanze to be the second largest city (after Kigali); new roads are going to be constructed including Musanze-Cyanika highway and we expect that some of the productivity will be exported to neighbouring countries,” he said.