Investors have until 30 March to submit technical and commercial proposals for the 15-year BOT contract to invest in and upgrade Al-Chahba Cement & Building Materials Company and Arabian Company for Manufacturing of Cement & Building Materials, both Aleppo-based, and Syrian Company for Manufacturing of Cement & Building Materials in Hama.

Interested companies are understood to include Swiss-based Holcim, France’s Lafarge, Egypt’s Orascom Construction Industries and Italy’s Italcementi.

‘In the long term, we are planning to upgrade all our existing plants at Adra, Tartous, Hama and two in Aleppo to double capacity [to 10 million tonnes a year],’ says a senior GOCBM official.