The KSC managing director, Guy Williams revealed this over the weekend when speaking to journalists at the just-ended NaneNane exhibitions in Morogoro Region.
He said that shareholders would soon be assessing the study results to evaluate the viability of the project and explore capital availability for an submission to its shareholders for approval of the project early 2020 if the results are positive.
“Subject to the positive outcome of the feasibility findings, and the successful raising of the required funding, it is anticipated that the project will be presented for final approval by the KSC shareholders of which the government of Tanzania has 25 per cent shareholding in Kilombero Sugar Ltd) towards the end of February 2020. If approved, construction would start shortly thereafter with project completion estimated by June 2022.
KSC’s expansion project will more than double the giant sugar producer’s production capacity from 125,000 tonnes to 265,000 tonnes of sugar per annum.
Currently, KSC’s contribution to the economy stands at 400 billion/- per annum but with the expansion project, this could almost double to 784 billion/-, said Williams
KSC’s corporate affairs general manager, Joseph Rugaimukamu, said the project will double the number of out growers from the present 8,000 to around 16,000. Besides, sugarcane production of the growers will increase three-fold from the current average of 500,000 tonnes to 1,450,000 tonnes of cane per annum,” he said.
“KSC management wishes to acknowledge the 5th government’s strong stance on protecting and supporting the sugar industry under the firm leadership of President John PombeMagufuli, which has motivated Kilombero Sugar to undertake the investigation into expanding its operations,” he said.
He added that, there has been great support from Morogoro regional authorities led by Regional Commissioner Dr. Kebwe Stephen Kebwe as well as Kilombero and Kilosa districts leadership teams in sensitising and preparing prospective farmers and surrounding communities for the grand economic opportunity.
Detailing the number of benefits to be accrued from the expansion project, Rugaimukamu said sugarcane revenue earned by Kilombero growers is also set to rise from 63 billion/- during the 2018/19 season to more than 141 billion/- per annum when the project becomes operational.
Similarly, the government will earn up to 50 billion/- in total additional taxes.This will go along with over 2,200 new employment opportunities along the sugar value chain.
“The project will positively impact the lives of an additional 50,000 Tanzanians living in the Kilombero valley. This is because the expansion is based on obtaining sugarcane mainly from the small growers and hence becoming a model for rural livelihoods transformation,” he said.
This conjures well with President John Magufuli’s desire to build an industrialised economy typical to that of a middle income one in line with Tanzania’s Vision 2025.