Business

Dangote cement plant excites market

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By MIKE MANDE The EastAfrican

Posted  Saturday, February 9  2013 at  16:16

In Summary

  • The projected capacity of the factory, to be built in Mtwara, southern Tanzania, is expected to be three million metric tonnes per annum, and Dangote is looking to get a good chunk of the market share.
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Tanzania is set to more than double its cement production capacity in 2015 when a $420 million cement factory by Nigeria-based conglomerate Dangote is completed.

The projected capacity of the factory, to be built in Mtwara, southern Tanzania, is expected to be three million metric tonnes per annum, and Dangote is looking to get a good chunk of the market share.

“We hope to push our production capacity to 50 million metric tonnes per annum within the next five years, based on its ongoing projects, which are at various stages of completion,” he said.

Currently, Tanzania has an estimated production capacity of three million metric tonnes per annum against a demand of 2.2 million tonnes per annum.

The construction, in conjunction with Chinese firm Sinoma International Engineering Company Ltd, has already commenced and head of communication Tony Chiejina says the factory will be completed in the second quarter of 2015.

Also being set up is a $1.85 billion fertiliser plant in Mtwara whose construction will go hand in hand with the cement plant.

Dangote hopes that the new cement plant will supply countries in the East African Community market as well as Malawi and DR Congo.

The region is currently undergoing a massive infrastructure upgrade, which has pushed up demand for cement, as governments invest in the construction of roads, ports and bridges, railways and energy projects.

“The plant, once it starts production, should help reduce the cost of cement in Tanzania and the region,” said Devakumar Edwin, Dangote’s group executive director in charge of business development.

The price of cement per tonne remains relatively high in Tanzania, averaging between $90 and $105 due to high energy costs and dependence on imported clinker.

In Tanzania, a 50kg bag of imported cement retails at Tsh12,500 ($7.8) while locally produced brands are selling at between Tsh13,000 ($8) and Tsh15,000 ($9.3).

In Kenya, current prices range between Ksh700 ($8) and Ksh750 ($8.5) per 50kg bag while in Uganda, the average price is Ush32,000 ($12) as at December 2012.

Tanzania Portland Cement is currently the country’s biggest producer with a production capacity of 1.4 million tonnes per annum.

Comparatively, Tanga Cement has a capacity of 1.25 million tonnes per annum while Athi River Mining Tanzania produces of 750,000 tonnes per annum. Mbeya Cement plant has an installed capacity of 350,000 tonnes per annum.

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