Mining, retail, power projects lift Cafca’s cable sales 47% in Q1

Cafca, Zimbabwe’s sole cable manufacturer, says projects in mining, retail and utilities lifted its local sales volumes by 47% in the three months to December.

Sales over the six months will come in “well above” sales in the comparative half-year, Cafca says in a trading update.

Export volumes increased by 25% compared to the same quarter in the previous year. Cafca exports into Botswana, Mozambique, South Africa, Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

However, it was growth in local volumes that showed signs of some activity in some key sectors. Cafca manufactures and supplies cable and allied products for power utility ZESA, telecoms companies and other local buyers.

“Local volumes increased by 47% year on year with utilities, mining and retail being very buoyant,” says Cafca.

The company is likely to benefit from growing renewable power investments by mining companies.

[ALSO READ | Gold and green: How Zimbabwean miners now dig renewables]

In order to avoid supply disruption, Cafca has over recent years kept a large pile of finished goods in stock.

“Efforts continue to maintain finished goods stock levels which are currently at 738 tonnes as a strategy against logistical and currency instability and to ensure we meet local market requirements,” the company said.

“We have no reason to believe that the next 3 months will be any different to this quarter’s volumes. Accordingly, we are forecasting a six-monthly volume that will be well above the previous year’s six-monthly volume.”

In 2018, the company said it had been given a protection period from imports to allow it to retool without the threat of cheaper cable imports.

Cafca has a deal with ZESA where it is allowed to harvest scrap copper in exchange for aluminium conductor cables. In 2019, the company said it needed 100 tonnes of used copper every month for repurposing into cables for its markets.

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