Nigerian industrial conglomerate, Dangote Group concluded a US$1.85bn financing deal on Tuesday to build four new cement plants in West Africa.
The agreement with a consortium of local banks is the latest move by Nigerian tycoon Aliko Dangote to expand his interests across the continent.
Dangote already controls about two-thirds of Nigeria’s lucrative domestic cement market. Under the deal, China’s Sinoma International will install a new production line at the Obajana plant in central Kogi state and build two new ones in southwest Ogun state, expanding Nigerian capacity to 26Mta.
Sinoma will also build a 2.5Mta year plant in Senegal, which is expected to come on-stream in 2010.
"Not only will we have made Nigeria self-sufficient in cement, but also a net exporter," Dangote said at a signing ceremony in the commercial hub of Lagos, adding that the new local plants would be operational within 28 months.
"We are building an African conglomerate that can compete across the continent and indeed globally," Dangote said.
He said the group had raised US$1.28bn from the local capital market and provided equity of about US$600m.