HomeBusiness DigestConstruction sector needs more help

Construction sector needs more help

Ngoni Chanakira

AL GLASS (Pvt) Ltd operations director Matthew Chandavengerwa says the construction industry needs more help from all quarters to be able to solve the housing crisis facing the country.

Last month the RBZ introduced a 30% facility to try and bail out the sector from its current problems.

In his monetary policy statement released in December RBZ governor Gideon Gono advised that concessionary finance at a maximum all-inclusive interest rate of 30% would apply to all productive and export sectors.

Under this facility statutory reserves contributed by financial institutions were made available to commercial and merchant banks for on-lending on a revolving basis.

“I think the idea is noble,” Chandavengerwa told businessdigest. “We however need more to be done for our sector to become more helpful to citizens.”

PG Glass Zimbabwe (Pvt) Ltd and Almin Metal Industries (Pvt) Ltd recently launched a joint venture company known as Al Glass (Pvt) Ltd to manufacture and distribute aluminium and glass products in Zimbabwe.

Based at PG Creative Paints building in Graniteside, Harare, Al Glass will concentrate on producing standard easy-to-install aluminium doors, windows and shower units for the do-it-yourself enthusiasts, contractors and property developers. These products will be sold completely fitted with the glass and all other accessories.

Chandavengerwa told businessdigest that he believed the company needed to do more exporting to earn the country foreign exchange.

“By introducing new products Al Glass is filling a gap and triggering a value-adding process to property owners and developers in Zimbabwe,” he said.

Aluminium and glass products have so far been used in Zimbabwe mainly in high-rise construction and shop fronts.

PG Glass Zimbabwe and Almin Metal Industries Ltd are key players in the construction sector with PG providing glass and glazing services while Almin provides frames.

Chandavengerwa said Al Glass’ objective was to increase the use of both aluminium and high value glass products in the housing sector.

He said in order to achieve this objective Al Glass had adopted high quality, versatile and widely used Nuklip Aluminium System from Almin Metal Industries which is highly specified and uses high quality glass ranging from 4 mm clear float to toughened and laminated safety and security glass processed by PG Glass Zimbabwe.

The type of glass and the colour of the aluminium frames can be installed to customer specification.

He said aluminium windows, doors and shower doors offered a number of distinct advantages to the property owner.

“Apart from the smooth and aesthetic properties of the products, aluminium requires good maintenance as it does not peel off or rust when exposed to the weather elements,” Chandavengerwa said. “Both wood and panel frames require regular maintenance in the form of varnish or paint to keep out the weather elements.”

He said in addition, the use of aluminium frames opened up a number of options in terms of glass that could be used including that for safety, decorative, security, weather and sound control.

“A combination of aluminium and high value glass leads to increased property values and long-term security,” Chandavengerwa said. “The products can be used by both new property developers and those extending or renovating their properties.”

The company’s joint venture partners, PG Glass Zimbabwe and Almin Metal Industries Zimbabwe are among the biggest suppliers of construction material in the country.

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