HomeBusiness DigestHippo still in talks over acquired property

Hippo still in talks over acquired property

Roadwin Chirara

HIPPO Valley Sugar Estates is still negotiating with government over the proposed compulsory acquisition of its properties.

s-serif”>The estates, situated in the Lowveld, are part of diversified conglomerate, Anglo-American Corporation (Amzim) and were placed under compulsory acquisition by the government as part of the ongoing land redistribution exercise.

Amzim group chief executive officer, James Maposa, said the company had approached the government over the proposed expropriation of the sugar estates.

He said the negotiations were mainly aimed at securing the de-listing of the property from its current position where it has been issued with a Section 5 notice of acquisition by the Ministry of Lands.

“Hippo Valley Estates remain listed under a Section 5 Preliminary Notice of Acquisition order. Representations are ongoing with the relevant authorities to secure the de-listing of the estates,” said Maposa.

He however said the company had increased its sugar production levels to meet increased demand both locally and abroad.

He said the proposed increase in the European Union sugar quota would also be met with the recent installation of a 300 000-tonne sugar production plant at the estates.

“The company has installed machinery with a production capacity of 300 000 tonnes of sugar, sufficient to meet all its market requirements into the foreseeable future,” said Maposa.

He said the company had invested heavily in the estates with the construction of the 20-megawatt turbo alternator for generation of power for its production needs.

Maposa said the project had also managed to generate excess which was sold to the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority.

He said the power generation unit’s capacity had increased to 30 million units of power, which will also be sold to the local power utility.

“The company has sufficient capacity to generate 30 million units of power for sale to Zesa annually,” said Maposa.

Hippo Valley Estates joins a growing list of local companies such as Mashonaland Holdings, Ariston Holdings and Interfresh that have appealed against the proposed compulsory acquisition of their properties by government.

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