Sochi – PhosAgro Group, one of the world’s leading producers of phosphate-based fertilizers, and Kropz plc., an emerging African phosphate producer, have signed a memorandum of understanding during the Russia–Africa Economic Forum in Sochi.
The two companies agreed to evaluate opportunities to exchange information and technical expertise in order to increase the capacity of the South African company’s projects both in South Africa itself, including Elandsfontein, the country’s second largest phosphate deposit, and in the Republic of the Congo and Ghana.
PhosAgro and Kropz also plan to explore the potential for cooperation aimed at promoting green fertilizers in world markets and teaching farmers about the benefits of using them.
Kropz CEO Ian Harebottle said: “We are pleased to be working with a leading global producer of phosphate-based fertilizers. The synergies with PhosAgro will provide Kropz with access to expert knowledge at all stages of the supply chain: from exploration works and feasibility studies to the construction of mines, as well as directly in the sales market, where PhosAgro has a strong position and an ever-growing customer base.
“Phosphate-based fertilizers play a key role in increasing crop yields and maintaining food security, especially in the countries of sub-Saharan Africa. The partnership with PhosAgro, as well as support from our governments, will enable Kropz to get closer to achieving its goal of becoming a vertically integrated plant nutrient company that works for the benefit of all its stakeholders.”
PhosAgro CEO Andrey Guryev said: “PhosAgro and Kropz are united in developing phosphate ore deposits that meet the highest environmental standards. Green, heavy metal-free phosphate ore is the basis for sustainable agriculture and food security worldwide. Therefore, we aim to inform the global community together of the problems of soil degradation and the risks to human health entailed by the use of fertilizers with high levels of toxic impurities such as cadmium.
“We are prepared to exchange experience with our partners regarding open-pit mining, which is what they actually do. PhosAgro has numerous innovations that are of interest to our colleagues. We develop them at the world’s leading specialised research institute for fertilizers and agrochemicals, the Samoilov Research Institute, which is part of PhosAgro Group. The Institute de facto created the environmentally friendly mineral fertilizer industry in Russia, and we celebrated its 100th anniversary this year.
“A separate area of cooperation will involve engagement with African governments to create reliable fertilizer supply channels. At PhosAgro, we work closely with farmers in Africa, currently delivering 300 thousand tonnes of fertilizers a year to the continent, and we aim to increase our supply two- or threefold over the next five years. I am certain that cooperation with Kropz will be fruitful for both parties.”