The new vessel, which is the most advanced marine diamond recovery vessel ever, is expected to be commissioned in 2021 and is expected to create more than 161 new jobs alongside Debmarine Namibia’s current workforce of 975 employees.
The company has started to mobilise and train its permanent employees well in advance.
On completion, the vessel is expected to add 500 000 carats annually to Debmarine Namibia’s production, an increase of approximately 35% on current production.
Debmarine Namibia’s AMV3 (Additional Mining Vessel no.3) construction is one of the largest commercial transactional deals in Namibia, as five commercial banks partnered in a US$375 million financing deal for 80% of the vessel construction costs and 20% by Debmarine Namibia. In its first five years of production, the AMV3 is expected to contribute N$2billion per annum in taxes and royalties to the Namibian Treasury.
Debmarine Namibia is adamant its business can provide a strong base for economic growth in Namibia. This follows the successful progression of the construction of the company’s largest and most advanced diamond recovery vessel to date, which is taking place at the Damen Shipyard in Mangalia, Romania.
According to the marine miner, some of the parts for the vessel are being fabricated in Walvis Bay by a company called 3C Metal Belmet Namibia.
3C Metal Belmet Namibia was awarded a contract to fabricate a large number of plates and structures to be installed on the new vessel.
The state-of-the-art vessel is being constructed in Romania and various parts are sourced from all over the world. According to Debmarine Namibia CEO Otto Shikongo, the project has a far-reaching global impact, as parts are sourced from around the world and some are being fabricated locally in Walvis Bay.
The mission equipment is being built in the Port of Cape Town concurrently with the construction of the vessel. The mission equipment consists of the recovery tool and processing plant, of which parts of the steelworks are being manufactured in Walvis Bay.
To attest to the construction of the new vessel adding value, Managing Director of 3C Metal Belmet Namibia Jarcu Groenewald said: “The project stretched our capacity, as it was a big learning curve for our employees -and we are grateful for the opportunity given by Debmarine Namibia. As a result, we managed to keep all our staff employed through these tough economic downturn related to Covid-19”.
He added the project was the biggest to be awarded to 3C Metal Belmet Namibia to date, which resulted in an expansion of their facilities and equipment to produce quality products. The company is now confident and equipped to take on more advanced projects.
The steel fabrication started 10 months ago and is expected to be completed by end of October.
Debmarine Namibia strongly believes local spending is a catalyst to the growth and development of local enterprises, as well as the creation of numerous job opportunities. To this effect, 3C Belmet Metal Namibia had 70 employees working on the project.
In addition to adding value to the country, Debmarine Namibia’s contribution is made up of the value added by paying wages, employee benefits, taxes and royalties as well as dividends, interest payments and the capital it retains for investing in the growth of the business. The company also makes significant payments to local suppliers of goods and services.