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Federal Government Set to Open Borders for Cement Importation

by Vicky Oselumese
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Federal Government Set to Open Borders for Cement Importation

The Federal Government of Nigeria has issued a threat to open the borders for cement importation if local manufacturers refuse to reduce the price of the commodity within the country. The Minister of Housing and Urban Development, Ahmed Dangiwa, made this announcement during an emergency meeting held with cement and building materials manufacturers in Abuja.

Dangiwa emphasized that key input materials for cement production, such as limestone, clay, silica sand, and gypsum, are sourced within Nigeria’s borders and should not be subject to dollar rates.

He dismissed the manufacturers’ claims that the price of gas and mining equipment were driving up production costs, stating that gas is readily available in the country and equipment is a long-term investment.

While the closure of the border was initially intended to support local manufacturers, Dangiwa warned that if the government decides to open the border for mass importation, it would lead to a crash in cement prices and severely impact local manufacturers.

He called on the manufacturers to demonstrate patriotism and reduce the price of cement, citing BUA Cement as an example of a company willing to lower their prices.

Rabiu Umar, the Group Chief Commercial Officer of Dangote Cement, acknowledged the challenges faced by the industry, attributing the high cost of gas and mining equipment to the increase in cement prices.

He highlighted the reliance on forex-related items for cement production, despite having access to some raw materials locally.

This article was updated 2 months ago

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