By Kenneth Ehigiator
The first aluminium can manufacturing facility in West Africa, owned and operated by GZ Industries Limited, has opened in Agbara, Ogun State and has commenced production of aluminium cans for the beverage industry in the country.
Nigeria currently imports 100% of its cans, costing the beverage and drinks industry millions annually in foreign exchange.
The plant was built with the latest technology provided by several international can equipment manufacturing companies from all over the world, with Rexam Plc (a publicly traded company on the London Stock Exchange) as technical partner and lead provider of equipment and processes technology.
With most of their production already committed to off-takers, GZI is currently moving ahead to immediately double this capacity to 1.2 billion cans per year, effectively exceeding 100% of Nigeriaâ€™s current can requirements and facilitating export to the neighbouring countries.
This expansion is expected to be completed by the second quarter of next year.Â The facility will then also be able to manufacture long, slim cans (currently used primarily for energy drinks) along with the 33cl and the 50cl beverage cans that it now produces.