The Dangote Group has reiterated its commitment towards partnering various tiers of Governments in the country, in building a sustainable, and inclusive economy for the benefit of all Nigerians.
Towards this, the Group said it has concluded plans to scale up investment in the agricultural sector, in response to the on-going public policy focus of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The Group made the disclosure on Sunday in Kano, during a ceremony organized to mark its ‘Special Day’, at the on-going 40th Kano International Trade Fair, noting that it particularly, intends expanding its sugar industry.
The Group Executive Director, strategy and governmental relations, Mansur Ahmed, who represented the President/CE, Aliko Dangote at the Special Day, hinted that as part of the Company `s support to the development of agricultural sector, the 3 million ton per year Fertilizer Plant it is developing is set for inauguration early next year.
Aliko said that the Conglomerate also intends kick-starting the development of six Large Scale Rice Milling Plants to be situated in six northern states namely Kano, Jigawa, Zamfara, Niger, Kebbi, and Sokoto, with a combined total milling capacity of 1.5 million per annum.
He said Dangote Group growing investment in the Agric sector, is to complement the existing and continuing investments being made in other sectors, such as Cement, Salt, and other consumer products.
“We are also, as some of you may be aware, significantly involved in the Oil and Gas sector, with the on-going construction of one of the World`s Largest Petroleum Refinery which we hope to commission within the next 12 to 15 months.
“This will not only put an end to the embarrassing importation of products into our crude oil-rich country but will also significantly boost our intra-African trade position”, told at large gathering participants at the event.
Dangote commended Federal Government’s policy, as efforts to bring Nigeria back on track, adding that such policy initiatives are necessary if the nation is to attain sustainable economic development and poverty alleviation.
“I must also commend the leadership of KACCIMA for the very apt theme of this year’s edition of the Fair: Promoting Agricultural Value Chain for Nigeria`s Sustainable Economic Development.
“Clearly, given the current focus of both the Federal Government and the Kano State and indeed most other states in the country on the Agricultural Sector as the only incontestable route for the revival and sustained growth of the Nigerian Economy, there can be no more pertinent subject matter to which we should direct the attention of all the participants at this Fair.
“This is especially so in Kano which had in the past been recognized as the leading Agro-Industrial hub not only in Nigeria but indeed for the entire Sahelian region of Africa. I have no doubt that a few of us in this gathering can remember, with some nostalgia I hope, the sights, sounds and smells of a bustling industrial life that hit you as you approach Bompai and Sharada Industrial in the 1960s and 1970s.
“Those bustling industries which were clearly the manufacturing components of a carefully planned Agricultural Value Chain Linkages, including Groundnuts, Leather, Cotton, etc, created the dynamic Kano economy of the 1960s and 70s which helped sustain and consolidate Kano`s long –standing status as the great Entrepot of the Trans –Saharan Trade Route.
In his earlier address, Dalhatu Abubakar, president, Kano Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines, and Agriculture (KACCIMA), commended Aliko for being major sponsor and the official face of the annual trade fair, over the years.