The Dangote Group on Sunday commenced the construction of a six million metric tonnes per annum cement factory in Okpella, Edo State.
The group will be spending one billion dollar for the construction of the cement factory.
The ground breaking ceremony was attended by the host Governor of Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, the Minister of Solid Minerals, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, Minister for Trade, Industry and Investment, Dr. Okechukwu Enelamah and other dignitaries.
President of Dangote Group and Africa’s richest man, Dr. Aliko Dangote said that local cement manufacturers were saving the country three billion dollars annually through cement import substitution.
Dangote urged other investors to invest more in the country considering the Federal Government’s readiness to resuscitate the industrial sector through investment friendly programmes.
Here’s what Dangote said:
“The additional investment in the sector will guarantee that we always meet local demand as well as surplus for export and foreign exchange generation.”
“A key factor that drives investments in an economy is the presence of an investor-friendly business climate.”
“Nigeria is a growing economy. Our developmental challenges are quite enormous and will require the combined efforts of government and private sector to overcome them.
“It is in this light that we are here to contribute our own quota to transforming the economy of Edo State as we have done elsewhere.
“This project is only one of our several successful projects presently ongoing in parts of the country and outside in more than 15 other locations in African countries in line with our Pan African investment strategy,” Dangote said.
In his remark, Governor Oshiomhole State said that the establishment of the cement plant in Edo State would increase the internally generated revenue (IGR) of the state and reduce its dependence on federal allocations from oil wealth.
On his own part, Dr. Enelamah, commended the expansion drive of Dangote Group through its commitment to liberate the country from cement importation, foreign exchange earnings and increased job creation for Nigerians.
Dr. Fayemi at the ceremony, said that the cement plant was an evidence that the diversification agenda of the Federal Government was already working in the right direction.
Fayemi said that the cement plant would be a model that would bring positive changes to the nation’s solid minerals sector in the areas of job creation, foreign exchange earnings and local content promotion.
The minister said that the mining sector was currently contributing 0.34 per cent to the GDP and had potential to contribute over $25 million annually to the economy by the year 2025.
He urged other investors to take a cue from Dangote’s commitment and support to transform the nation’s economy through active participation in government’s programmes.