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‘Africans investing in Africa, only way to salvage continent’

By Femi Adekoya 
24 November 2017   |   4:33 am
With foreign direct investments not forthcoming, the Federal Government noted that pan-African investments will further help to integrate the continent and help to create needed jobs.

Minister, Mines and Steel Development, Kayode Fayemi (left); President, Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote; President of the Republic of Congo, Dennis Sassou Nguesso at the commissioning of 1.5MMTPA Dangote Cement Plant in the Central African country …yesterday.

• FG lauds Dangote’s pan-African investments, unveiling of $300m Congo cement plant

The Federal Government has charged African businessmen on the need to intensify pan-African investments, noting that only Africans themselves and not foreigners can salvage the continent.

With foreign direct investments not forthcoming, the Federal Government noted that pan-African investments will further help to integrate the continent and help to create needed jobs.

Besides, government has also commended Alhaji Aliko Dangote for his pan-African investments, especially the unveiling of his latest $300 million 1.5 metric tonnes cement plant in Congo-Brazzaville, even as he was awarded a national honour by the Congolese government.

Speaking at the commissioning of the plant in Mfila, Congo, President Muhammadu Buhari, who was represented by the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, said his administration will continue to do all it can to support local manufacturers such as Dangote Cement and other companies that intend to do business, both within and outside the country.

“I am delighted to note that Dangote Cement has been championing economic renaissance of Africa with the construction of cement plants across several African countries. This sterling accomplishment makes the Dangote Cement brand, and indeed Aliko Dangote himself, worthy ambassadors of Nigeria. Let me use this forum to state unequivocally that the Federal Government of Nigeria has consistently supported and encouraged the Dangote Group in their quest to contribute their quota to the economic emancipation of the African continent, which is blessed with a plethora of natural resources.

“I believe that it is only home-grown practical solutions that can address the myriad issues plaguing Africa today and one of such challenges that Africa has been grappling with for decades are the infrastructure deficit. I am confident that massive investments in cement production, which is a key driver of infrastructural development, will contribute in no small measure, to addressing this perennial problem”, he added.

On his part, the President of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote, said the Cement Plant is the largest cement plant in Congo-Brazzaville in terms of installed production capacity.

“With the commissioning of the plant, we become also the largest integrated cement producer in the CEMAC region comprising Cameroon, Chad, Central African Republic (CAR), Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and now, the Republic of the Congo.

“It is our hope that our plant will help to reduce and eventually replace cement imports into Congo-Brazzaville and these other countries. More importantly, it is also our hope that this project we are commissioning today, will further cement the existing cordial ties between our two countries—the Republic of the Congo and Nigeria.

“As we all know, cement is one of the basic inputs in infrastructure development. For Africa, a continent, which faces severe infrastructural deficits, the need for local self-sufficiency in cement production cannot be over-emphasised. We believe that this can help in bridging the infrastructure deficit and contribute to accelerating the development of the continent”; he added.