ADDIS ABABA, Feb. 5 (Xinhua) -- The Lemi National Cement Factory in Ethiopia, the country's largest of its kind once completed, will commence production soon, company officials said on Monday.
The factory is expected to be completed in March, according to its constructor, Sinoma International Engineering Company.
Once fully operational, the factory is expected to boost the East African country's annual cement production capacity by 8 million metric tons, state-affiliated Fana Broadcasting Corporate quoted company officials as saying.
Abebaw Bekele, deputy manager of the factory, said the plant will help alleviate Ethiopia's incessant cement shortage, which is currently affecting the country's booming construction sector.
The mega cement production factory is also expected to create employment opportunities for some 20,000 Ethiopians, according to company officials.
Owned by a joint venture of West International Holding, the African arm of West China Cement, and East African Holding Company, the Lemi National Cement Factory is under construction at a cost of 600 million U.S. dollars at Lemi Building Materials Industrial Park, some 150 km north of Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia.
Company officials have recently announced the completion of installing huge preheater frames and rotary kilns, structures in which big rocks are decomposed under high temperatures to produce cement, marking a major milestone in the construction of the factory. ■