Dangote Cement to attract $700m into economy

•Pays N16 dividend

The Chairman of Dangote Cement Plc, Aliko Dangote, has promised that the expected increase in export of cement will attract a minimum of  $700 million into the economy.

Disclosing this yesterday during the company’s 10th Annual General Meeting in Lagos, he said the foreign exchange inflow would assist the Federal Government as well as Dangote Group in its other activities across Africa.

The chairman, who described the shareholders and staff as the bedrock of the company, also promised to pay N16 per every 50k share as dividend.

He expressed optimism on the prospect of the company, revealing that the company will be effectively operating in a minimum of 18 African countries in a short while by increasing the capacity of its Obajana Plant to 16 million metric tons, making it one of the biggest cement plant in the world.

According to him, “all these, surely will translate to an enhanced value appreciation to the shares of Dangote Cement and more money in the pockets of the shareholders.

“We have a lot of ongoing projects aimed at increasing capacity and by next year, we will not only export one million tons as we normally do now, we will be servicing both the domestic and other African countries from Nigeria.

“We will have a capacity of about eight million tons to export and that will generate a foreign exchange of about $700 million into the country.”

He described 2018 as the most successful for the company as it recorded an increase in cement sales by 7.4per cent to 23.5 million tonnes and 11.9 per cent growth in revenues to N901.2 billion.

“Sale of cement from our Nigerian plants increased by 11.4 per cent to 14.2 million metric tons in 2018. Our Pan-African operations contributed 9.4 million metric tons level on 2017, with strong performances in Cameroon, Senegal and Zambia, helping to offset weaknesses in Ethiopia and gas turbines now operating in Tanzania.

“We expect these two large plants to improve their performance in 2019, further increasing profitability,” he noted.

Speaking further on the expansion dream of the company, Dangote said: “Later in 2019, we will open export facilities in Lagos and Port Harcourt that will enable us to export clinker, initially to our grinding plants we are building in West Africa.

“Not only will these generate useful foreign exchange for Dangote Cement to support other expansion projects outside of Nigeria, they will also help to increase the output of our Nigerian plants. They will also help to improve job creation and increase prosperity in Nigeria, something of which all stakeholders can be proud of.”

On his part, the Group Chief Executive Officer, Eng. Joseph Makoju, who noted that the future looked bright for the firm, said the company in 2019 would focus on efficiency gains and achieving higher sales in domestic and export markets.

He said: “A major priority for us is to get these export terminals on stream so we can replace non-African imports in Cameroon, rake in foreign currency for Nigeria and increase the utilisation of our Nigerian plants.”

Also at the meeting, shareholders of were all in high spirit and full of praise to the board and management of the company after the sum of N16 was approved as a dividend on each 50kobo share held.

They lauded the decision to increase dividend payout by 52.4 per cent from the N10. 50 per share that was paid in the corresponding period of 2017.

A former National Coordinator of the Independent Shareholders Association, Chief Sunny Nwosu, expressed satisfaction at the performance of the company, describing it as remarkable and unprecedented.

He then advised the management not to rest on its oars as the shareholders would be expecting more in the next accounting year.

Besides the performance of the company, Nwosu also noted that the sustainability report of the company was very commendable and that nobody would not like to associate with a company like Dangote Cement with a track record of good corporate governance and sustainability development.

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