Nigeria: AshakaCem to boost cement capacity by 0.3Mta

Nigeria: AshakaCem to boost cement capacity by 0.3Mta
Published: 13 February 2012


Ashaka Cement Plc, a subsidiary of Lafarge Cement WAPCO Nigeria plc, says it is adding 300,000tpa in capacity and raising its total output potential to 1.3Mta.

Alhaji Umaru Kwairanga, the company’s new chairman, said the company is being spurred by the expansion fever in the cement industry as most of the local producers are currently investing in capacity expansion to bridge the supply gap.

“We have maintained our market share which is a little above 5% but with the growth of the market we feel we cannot continue to stay where we are; so we have already started working on short-term expansion so that we can move our company 1Mta capacity by an additional 0.3Mt this year.  We have commenced feasibility study on this and the outcome will help us determine the next line of action,” he disclosed.

Fielding questions on how NGN97/l of fuel is telling on the company’s operation and profitability, he noted that as a result of the high cost of diesel and low-pour fuel oil (LPFO) the company invested NGN10bn in coal technology.

“We are the only cement company in Nigeria that is using coal. This was a substitute to the use of LPFO for kiln firing.

The project consists of coalmine operation at Maiganga and coal grinding workshop at Ashaka. The company has commenced the burning of coal to fire its kilns. I think it is an advantage for us compared with other cement manufacturing companies.

“The power project was embarked upon to improve utilisation factor for its cement mills that would result in increased output in order to satisfy its sales requirement as per budget.”