By Franklin Alli
Dangote Cement Plc is warming up to expand its cement production plants beyond the continent of Africa to the Middle East and Latin American countries.
The company is optimistic that the planned investment will propel it to be ranked among the top ten global cement manufacturers and also earn Nigeria foreign exchange.
“We are currently operating in fourteen African countries and we shall soon move across the continent to other continents. By the time we have consolidated our hold in Africa markets, we shall go beyond the borders. Specifically, we are targeting the Middle East and Latin America. The idea is to be a world leader in cement production,” said Sunday Adondua, Deputy General Manager, Production, Ibese Plant.
He further disclosed that in addition to their cement plants in South Africa, Cameroun, Zambia, Kenya; Senegal, Tanzania and Ethiopia, “ We are also planning to start a plant in Guinea Bissau, Mauritania, and we are also planning projects in Gabon.”
On the Ibese plant’s new production lines, he stated that the new line 3 and 4 is heading for timely commissioning by the end of this year and it would double the factories production capacity to twelve million metric tons per annum from the current six million metric tons.
He explained that works to double the size of the Ibese factory by building two more lines alongside the existing line I and 2 started in August 2012.
He explained that line 3 is ready for cement production and dispatch while the fourth line is 96 percent completed.
The plant will have a production and dispatch capacity of 12 million tonnes per year by the end of 2014.
He added that a combined production capacity of the three plants (Ibese, Obajana and Gboko) will be doing over 29.2 million metric tons of cement annually.
Mr. Armando Martinez, the plant director, noted that the employment Aliko Dangote is creating across the country and the continent has been improving the lives of Nigerians, Africans and humanity. He said that Dangote is the biggest investor in Africa and his investments are long term investments that can attract lots of foreign exchange earnings for the host country and the continent of Africa.