Liberia: House Reviews U.S.$41 Million Dangote Cement Investment Agreement

Mr. Dangote is Africa's richest man and has the largest cement producing company on the continent.

Members of the House of Representatives are reviewing an Investment Incentive Agreement between the Government of Liberia and Dangote Cement Liberia Limited worth over US$41 million from the DANGOTE GROUP - one of the most diversified business conglomerates in Africa.

The group's activities encompass cement manufacturing, packing, and distribution.

Aliko Dangote, Africa's richest man, founded and chairs Dangote Cement, the continent's largest cement producer.

On Tuesday the House's Plenary mandated its Joint Committee on Ways, Means, Finance & Development Planning, the Judiciary and Investment, Contracts and Monopolies to probe the agreement and report to Plenary in two weeks.

The House's decision was prompted by a letter from President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, urging the Legislature to ratify the agreement.

According to the letter from the President, the duration of the agreement is 15 years, and it will include financing, construction, development, and operation of a clinker grinding unit with cement packing and dispatch plant of 1,000 tons per day, expendable to 2,000 tons per day capacity, within the Freeport of Monrovia.

The President wrote: "Dangote Cement Liberia Ltd is registered under the laws of the Republic of Liberia, and its parent investor, Dangote Cement Plc, is a fully integrated cement investor in Nigeria, Benin, Ghana, Senegal, South Africa, Zambia, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Republic of Congo and Gabon with total existing production capacity of 15.7m tons per annum and new production projects in development with 17.7m tons per annum additional capacity. The investor operates Obajana Cement Plant (OCP), the largest cement plant in sub-Saharan Africa with a capacity of 7.7m Mtpa."

She added: "Hon. Speaker, when ratified, this project will create jobs during its construction operations and expansion phases. The investor shall also provide a scholarship for study in Liberia, through an investor grant of US$15,000 annually.

"The scholarship beneficiaries will be students who are Liberian citizens and residents of the district in which the terminal is located. The investor is also expected to assist Government in the maintenance of the roads leading to its Port terminal."

The President further said: "Mr. Speaker, I am glad that after two years of persistent effort, Liberia will finally join the many other African countries that are benefiting from an investment by Africa's most successful corporate entrepreneur.

"I, therefore, urge the Legislature to ratify this Agreement, which will bring many key benefits to our people including: stabilizing and making the prices of cement affordable; ensuring the constant availability of cement on the local market; creating employment opportunities; and contributing immensely to the economic recovery and development programs of the country."

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