Rising Tide

Nigeria: Lafarge won’t chase Dangote, BUA to build new cement capacity

By David Whitehouse

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Posted on November 2, 2021 15:38

Labourers stand on top of a trailer transporting cement along Ajah-Lagos expressway in Lagos
A trailer transports cement along the Ajah-Lagos expressway. REUTERS/Akintunde Akinleye

Lafarge Africa plans to improve the utilisation of its installed cement capacity in Nigeria to meet increased demand, Nigeria country CEO Khaled El Dokani tells The Africa Report.

The company’s ‘debottling’ programme underpinned by new industry technology will lead to the availability of about 2 million tons of incremental capacity and will address the market’s medium-term growth prospects, El Dokani says. He expects the utilisation rate will increase from about 55% now, to about 80% in two years.

Analysts have questioned whether the company’s plans are ambitious enough. In the first quarter of 2021, according to analysts at Chapel Hill Denham, Lafarge only had about 7 million metric tons (mmt) of operational capacity, out of its total installed capacity of 10.5mmt. In the first half of 2021, Dangote Cement lifted Nigerian capacity by 33% to 9.9 mmt, while BUA Cement is planning a new cement line at Kalambaina to  increase market share.

  • Lafarge is likely to continue to trail behind Dangote Cement and BUA – in capacity terms – at the end of 2022, according to the

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