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Khato Engineers to create over 4,000 jobs

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Khato Civil Engineers, successful bidders of the $500 million Lake Malawi water project, says it plans to create over 4,000 jobs once the project commences.

The project which involves pumping water from Lake Malawi in Salima is being managed by Lilongwe Water Board but contracted to Khato.

Once complete, the project is expected to pump over 50 million litres of water a day from the lake to Lilongwe.

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Currently, Lilongwe is the only city experiencing frequent water shortages.

Khato Chairperson, Simbi Phiri, said yesterday that most of employment opportunities will be in auxiliary services to complement the core personnel of Khato Civil and South Zambezi.

“There will be a lot of quarrying, and the project will need heavy machine operators, drivers, engineers, welders and those who will be involved in rebar and mortar construction. We are relying on local labour to do this,” he said.

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Phiri also said there is great benefit to be derived from encouraging the continent’s construction and engineering companies to strengthen collaboration and sharing of skills, knowledge and resources if Africa is to achieve its goals for infrastructure development and dealing with skills shortages.

“No country has ever developed by using exclusively its own engineers. Skills should be drawn from the whole world. In some instances, engineers are engaged on a needs basis,” Phiri said.

He further said the local industry should also double its efforts in encouraging Malawian youth to take up engineering as a viable career option in order to address the skills gap the country faces.

On the project, Phiri said Khato has invested two cutting-edge Tesmec trenchers worth about $2 million each.

“We are excited about the project and will deliver the best value to the people of Malawi. We continue to make sure as a company that we invest in the best equipment, latest technology and innovation to deliver the best quality projects in an environmentally sustainable manner,” he said.

Phiri explained that the project will improve lives of millions of people, not only in Malawi but the whole region. He said such a massive infrastructural project would open up investment opportunities.

“All aspects of our lives are dependent on water. As we have done in other countries in which we operate across the southern Africa region, we are creating conditions for millions of people to have adequate drinking water and good sanitation which are important elements to human life,” Phiri said.

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