Dangote’s $500 million Cement plant in Senegal is to begin to turn out its first cement output from November 2011, THISDAY has learnt.
The General Manager in charge of projects, Mr. Ganapathy Balabubramanian, told THISDAY at the Gallen Village location of the of the Dangote Cement Senegal Subsidiary that construction works at the factory were at very advanced stage, adding that the first cement will be turned out by the end of the year.
“We have completed the civil works at the site and have began that mechanical aspect of the work which is now 20 percent complete. The first batch of cement will be produced between November and December 2011”, Balabubramanian said.
According to him, the factory, which is being executed as a turnkey project by Chinese firm Sinoma Engineering, was kicked-off with design and engineering in September 2009.
He said construction commenced in April 2010 and the remaining 80 percent of materials needed to complete the project were already on ground in the factory premises.
The factory, Balabubramanian said, will turn out one million tonnes of cement annually with massive allowance for expansion when the market spreads.
The Senegalese have a 3 million tonnes of cement consumption capacity with the already existing two cement companies producing 2.5 million tonnes per annum.
Since the Senegalese Government has a 100 percent ban on the importation of cement, Dangote’s coming in with a one million tonnes per annum capacity cement plant will not only help the French colony meet its local cement demand, but will also boost the nations export potential.
Dangote cement Senegal already targets Mali and Guinea as markets where the surplus from its factory will be sold, taking advantage railway lines running from the factory all the way to Mali.
The company, according to the Project Manager, has a 30 Mega Watts power plant which will be fired with coal imported from South Africa.
He however stated that the power plant was merely a back-up, since the municipal power supply from Senegal Electricity Board is very effective and stable.
Buoyed by the huge success in Nigeria where it currently accounts for over 50 per cent share of the cement market, Dangote Group said it plans to produce between 46 and 48 million metric tons of cement from its various facilities across Africa by 2015.
The company said it is currently increasing the capacity of its existing plants by building new ones to enable it take advantage of the Federal Government’s proposed ban on cement imports by next year.