North African brick on the menu - Tunisian and Algerian companies increase output capacity

Clay Technology magazine
14 Oct 2013

Google ‘Tunisian brick’ and you’re likely to find a list of recipes for fried pastry dishes popular with both locals and visitors from around the world. But a recent upturn in the North African market could see the area become increasingly important to the clay brick industry.

Briqueterie Boughzala, one of the oldest brick manufacturers in Tunisia, is now fully operational following a major expansion that started in 2010. The company used equipment from SABO, based in South Africa, to expand its capacity to 500 tonnes of B12 bricks per day. The new facility includes a 142m kiln and a rapid dryer of 64 balancelles loaded with two rows of bricks by the improved cutter and loading equipment. Automatic lubrication is used for the loading table and the regulation system ensures that heat from the kiln can be used in the dryer to reduce energy loss. A new packaging line at the factory uses an automated loading system to create packages optimised for lifting with forklifts, without the need for pallets.

Also in North Africa, the IMJ plant in Fesdis, Algeria, has expanded its capacity with equipment from Ceric. The plant produces 100,000 tonnes of eight-hole hollow bricks, primarily used in constructing partition walls, and 12-hole hollow bricks used in erecting exterior walls. This upgrade comes as the Algerian Government aims to promote the construction of more modern and energy-efficient housing throughout the country.

Staying in Algeria, German firm LINGL has signed a contract with SARL BCB, based in Tidjelabine. The Algerian company is looking to produce wall bricks using LINGL equipment, including an Opti-flow rapid dryer and tunnel kiln, with the aim of producing 28,000 tonnes of finished product annually.

Whether these developments are part of a wider trend is yet to be seen, but it is certainly worth keeping an eye on the North African market in the coming months.