Maputo — Mozambique's Minister of Industry and Trade, Armando Inroga, announced on Wednesday that the Riopele textile factory, paralysed for the past decade, may reopen next March to produce thread and cloth.
The derelict factory has been being acquired by Mozambique Cotton Manufacturers (MCM), a consortium formed by the Mozambican company Intelec Holdings and the Portuguese companies Mundotextil, Mundifios and Crispim Abreu.
Last year, MCM took over the assets of Riopele, located in the district of Marracuene, about 30 kilometres north of Maputo.
Speaking during a visit to the Riopele premises, Inroga said the factory will use cotton grown in Guru, in the central province of Manica.
The cotton will undergo initial treatment in Guru, he said, “and will then be brought here for laboratory assessment, processing, and the production of cloth and thread that will then be sold and can be used to make any textile product”.
Last year MCM promised to invest 40 million US dollars in Riopele. Inroga confirmed that so far the consortium has invested 12 million dollars.
“This volume of investment”, he said, “will make possible spinning, weaving and dyeing. It will then be possible later on to develop small and medium companies that will allow us to have an integrated national textile industry”.
Inroga said this was part of the government's strategy to revive the textile industry, and the MCM factory is the first large unit to be assembled under this strategy
“What we want is for the entire production chain of the textile industry to be national”, he declared.
The general manager of Intelec Holdings, Haje Pedreiro, told reporters that the consortium is currently installing the machinery for producing thread. In an initial phase, the company will employ 200 workers in a single shift, but the number would rise as the factory moved towards full capacity and started working 24 hours a day.