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U.S. Sanctions On Fossil Group Have Impacted Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe’s second-biggest cement maker, Lafarge on Thursday said sanctions imposed by the United States of America on Fossil Group early this month have impacted some of its processes.

The US sanctions came only weeks after Fossil Mining concluded its US$29.7 million takeover of Lafarge, giving it 76.45% shareholding, according to NewsDay.

Lafarge said it was exploring “various courses of action” to defend its interests after multiple sanctions were imposed on firms linked to Fossil Group, the empire that controls its major shareholder, Fossil Mines.

Lafarge has since halted trading on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE), as its board evaluated how the US embargo would impact the firm.

The company has been a part of Zimbabwe’s construction environment for almost seven decades after being established in 1954 and listed on the ZSE in 1983.

In a statement released on Thursday, acting company secretary Arnold Chikazhe hinted that the US government’s action was already being felt at the operation. Chikazhe said:

Certain persons and companies linked to the majority shareholder Fossil Mines were placed under targeted economic sanctions by the United States of America’s Office of Foreign Assets Control.

These have impacted some processes within Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe. The company is considering various courses of action with the view to protecting the business and the interests of all stakeholders. The company does not anticipate any disruptions in the supply of its much-needed products to the construction and infrastructure sectors of Zimbabwe’s economy.

Early this month, the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control said the government of Zimbabwe awarded Fossil Contracting nearly US$40 million in contracts in 2021.

It also said Fossil Agro and Fossil Contracting were sanctioned pursuant to EO 13469 for providing material, logistical, or technical support to the government of Zimbabwe.

Fossil Agro and Fossil Contracting, part of the Fossil Group, were added to a list of firms and individuals that have been sanctioned at various stages in the past two decades.

Major shareholder, Obey Chimuka was also placed on the sanctions list.

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