The Nigerian Government has officially confirmed that Nigeria is now self-sufficient in the production of cement, and has become an exporter of the commodity. They have ascribed the feat to Dangote Cement, which has spear-headed the backward integration policy that was introduced by the government.
The Minister for Solid Ninerals Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, visited the Dangote cement plant in Ibese, and emphasised his enthusiasm for the leadership role played by the company. A few years ago, Nigeria imported 60% of its cement, but is now able to meet local demands and still export to other nations.
The Minister stated: “As you all know, as the Federal government moves to diversify the economy away from oil, two areas the government is focusing on are agriculture and solid minerals, this is why we are embarking on tour of mining operations across the country to know the challenges they face and what could be done to tackle those challenges. “What Dangote is doing is marvelous. We need to commend them. The way they led the backward integration policy to turn around our fortunes in the cement industry. I am delighted to see the development here bigger that what I saw the last time. And we are looking at how we can replicate the successes in the cement industry in other non-oil sectors of our economy.”
“We exported nearly 0.4 million t into neighbouring countries and in doing so, we achieved a great milestone by transforming Nigeria into a net exporter of cement,” said the Group Managing Director of Dangote Cement, Onne Van der Weijde. “This is a remarkable achievement, given that only five years ago, in 2011, Nigeria was one of the world’s largest importers, buying 5.1Mt of foreign cement at huge expense to our balance of payments. We will increase our exports substantially in 2017.”
The government is also looking into how to make the big cement plants in the company more environmentally friendly, following the example set by Dangote Cement.
“We need to collaborate and partner in these areas at this time that government is trying to reduce the dependence on oil. We need to turn around our mineral resources just as what obtained in cement sector. When you look at the our solid mineral industry, there is a wide gap between what we can produce and what is consumed, importation in these sector is huge.”
Dangote Cement is Africa's leading cement producer with nearly 46 million tpy capacity across Africa, a fully integrated quarry-to-customer producer with production capacity of 29.25 million tpy in Nigeria.
Read the article online at: https://www.worldcement.com/africa-middle-east/20032017/dangote-cement-plays-role-in-making-nigeria-self-sufficient/