Nigeria’s largest cement manufacturer, Dangote Cement is set to build new plants in 8 countriesacross Africa, the firm said on Tuesday. In signing a deal worth $4.34 billion with China’s Sinoma International Engineering Co., the company will increase its expansion profile in some of Africa’s frontier markets.

The company has put expansion plans into works over the past years with plants across Africa. But while these have remained under construction over the past few years, this latest development will further boost production capacity. The new plants to be built in Cameroon, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali, Nepal, Niger, Senegal and Zambia, will add 25 million tonnes to Dangote’s existing capacity of almost 50 million tonnes, Group Executive Director Edwin Devakumar said.

“No country or institution can solve its challenge alone; we must harness the power of the private sector and civil society for share of solution to the complex challenges,” said Aliko Dangote. He also stressed the need to work with government to build an all inclusive global partnership to improve accountability in and to share responsibility across the sector. “[…] we must leverage on our comparative strength, capacities and resources to achieve meaningful result,” Dangote said.

Dangote cement plant across  Africa have created employment for about 2,000 direct jobs and  5,000 indirect job opportunities. Dangote’s $1billion investment in rice farming has the capacity to create at least 8,000 new jobs and significantly reduce the price of locally produced rice.

In August 2014 Alhaji Aliko Dangote invested close to $1 billion (N165 billion) in Nigeria’s commercial rice farming; making it the largest single investment ever made in rice production on the continent. This gave rise to the establishment of two modern integrated rice mills with the capacity to mill 120,000 metric tons of rice daily. In a similar vein the Nigerian billionaire made efforts to consolidate the position of Dangote Sugar Refinery (DSR) in the Nigerian sugar industry.

Owned by Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote, whose personal fortune is estimated at $25 billion, the company has been expanding its footprint in Africa with investment in production plants in several countries on the continent and beyond Africa in the works. He holds lucrative interests in diversified business sectors including cement, flour, sugar, and agricultural production across African nations.

The Dangote Group has continued to work on some backward integration strategies, into domestic sugar production and milling business as a ploy to retain its market leadership, and dominant position.

Source: Felicia Omari Ochelle, Ventures Africa

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