Dangote stakes $300 million on new cement plant in Senegal
To further deepen its presence in the West African sub – region as well as drive its export agenda, Dangote Cement Plc has staked $300 million on its new plant in Senegal.
With the new plant, the company hopes to improve the country’s cement production capacity with an additional 1.5million tonnes, while serving an export market demand of two million tonnes along the Mali axis.
Besides, despite commencing operations only recently, the company is optimistic of penetrating the market with at least 1.2 million metric tonnes of cement before end of 2015.
Speaking during a tour of the facility in Dakar, Senegal, on Wednesday, the Country Head, Dangote Cement, Senegal, Luk Haelterman explained that the company’s plant is near completion but has commenced production to fill the demand gap in the country, especially with its 42.5 grade of cement.
According to Luk, the market, despite being a saturated one, has potential for growth both for local consumption and export, with the introduction of the new cement grade in the region.
“The last few years has seen the company overcoming a lot challenges in the country, especially those related to the smear campaign on environmental impact of the factory in the country. It’s a saturated market with Dangote being the third entrant in the market after two other cement manufacturers. What has kept us going is the competitive edge that our 42.5 grade of cement has given us in offering consumers fine quality of cement.
“Our corporate social responsibility activities have improved and we believe that the plant would exemplary to community matters”, he added.
The company’s Chief of operations in the country, Athanasios Bampos, explained that the plant is strategically located to exploit raw materials and serve the export market.
He added that the the company generates 15mega watts of power from the plant and has been able to effectively address environmental concerns with new machines and processes.
Nigeria’s Ambassador to Senegal and Mauritania, Mrs Katyen Jackden, commended Dangote Cement on the investment, saying that the move would further enhance regional integration in the sub-region.
“Africans should pilot the growth of business in the region and African development. Dangote should be commended for taking that move in driving cohesion in the region through his investment.
“I wish the Dangote group a successful year and commend the Senegalese people for their support to the group”, she added.