Dangote Cement aims at 9 metric tonnes more per annum; set to increase capacity by July
Shareholders have commended the initiatives of the management of Dangote Cement Plc in upgrading the quality of its cement to 42.5 grades; describing the development as a good response to the demands of the time.
Speaking at the 2013 Annual General meeting (AGM) of the Company in Lagos, the shareholders passed a vote of confidence on the management, saying it has exhibited a sense of patriotism and concern for the users of the product. This is just as the Chairman of the Company; Aliko Dangote explained that the expansion strategies embarked upon by the management would culminate in an increase of an additional 9 million metric tonnes of cement capacity. Shareholders lauded the Dangote Cement management for rising to the occasion by raising the bar with the 42.5 and 52.5 grades recently rebranded against the background of incessant building collapse across the nation.
They stated that with the upgrade of the cement from the staple of Dangote Cement Plc, it would now be clear that any incident of building collapse anywhere could no longer be traced to the quality of cement, at least the one produced by Dangote.
The Chairman in the meeting also disclosed that its expansion drive would increase capacity and also add additional 9 million metric tonnes, expressing satisfaction that the importation of cement into the country has continued to thin out with an estimate of just 1.1m metric tonnes imported in 2013 down from 1.9m in 2012.
He vowed that the company would stop at nothing to expand because presently most neighboring countries are importing cement from Far East. And we are confident that Nigeria’s cement will prove more attractive than the imports, particularly within the 15 member ECOWAS.”
To stabilize the price of cement and free the consumers from profiteering middlemen, Dangote, said that his company would intensify direct-to-consumer deliveries.
Insisting that his company has not increased the price of cement, he explained that though prices of most inputs into cement production has gone astronomically high but that his organization is committed to making the commodity available to consumers at the most reasonable price.
“We have not increased the prices of our product, we have embarked on an initiative to improve the standard of cement sold in Nigeria and our belief is that 42.5 strength cement is the most appropriate for general use now.
“We have recently introduced 52.5 strength cement, which is appropriate for heavy load-bearing structures such as bridges and flyovers, we hope to increase the market share in the short-term by increasing the level of direct-to-customers deliveries and competing on product superiority”, he stated
The company Chairman also expressed optimism that the current year would offer better returns because trading has remained robust in the country and the company has started witnessing solid start to the year with demand up in all regions.
Dangote also informed the shareholders the status of the company’s various African projects as the shareholders one after another shower commendations on the management of the cement company.
In Ethiopia, work is well underway, to build 2.5m mtpa plant at Mugher with production expected late in 2014. In Tanzania, we have begun work on a 3m mtpa plant at Mtwara and would be fully operational in 2015. In Zambia, work is underway on a 1.5m mtpa at Ndola with cement production expected in second half of 2014.
“We are reviewing plans for Kenya with a view to increasing the scale of our proposed factory from 1.5 to 3.0m tpa, because we are confident there will be sufficient demand both in Kenya and neighbouring countries he said.”