Ghanaian farmers and fertiliser importers to rely on Dangote

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Ghanaian Fertiliser importers stand the chance of importing the commodity at cheaper rates from Nigeria in the next few years, when the Dangote Fertiliser plant under construction in Lekki in Lagos State is completed.

Lower rates in importing would subsequently have rippling effects in the stepping up of production in both cash and food crops in Ghana and beyond.

Mr Anurag Jaiswal, General Manager of Dangote Fertiliser, announced this when Ghanaian Journalists visited the plant to acquaint themselves of the production potentials and impact on the African market.

He said Nigeria and her neighbours who would be major beneficiaries of the project would reduce imports of urea by about one million tonnes when the two-line fertiliser complex, consisting of ammonia and urea plants is completed.

The plant, believed to be the world’s largest fertiliser plant with a total capacity of three million tonnes per annum of urea fertiliser would produce urea that would serve farmers in Nigeria and the entire sub-region to boost their crop yields through easy access to fertiliser.

In Ghana most farmers spend a chunk of their capital in buying inputs including fertilisers to produce food crops such as maize, rice, sorghum, millet and cowpea and cash crops such as cocoa, cotton and coffee in most parts of the country.

It has a captive power plant comprising three steam turbine generators of 40 megawatts capacity each, with three auxiliary boilers for 40 steam generation of 200 tonnes capacity each.

While high cost of these inputs have over the years had negative repercussions on food production, importers have also taken advantage of their high demand to make profits through selling of the commodity.

He said the completion of the Dangote plant would therefore provide both importers and farmers alternatives to carry out their business and farming activities smoothly.

Mr Jaiswal said Dangote Group is investing about $ 2 billion on the project that would guarantee substantial saving of foreign exchange against imports of urea and sustain its availability in the sub-region.

The General Manager indicated that the completion of the project would also create numerous job opportunities for Nigeria and her neighbours as many would be directly and indirectly engaged in businesses in the fertiliser value chain.

The situation, he added would also make West Africans food sufficient and net exporters as they would step up production and reduce transmigration of people from rural to urban centres for non-existent jobs.

The Ghanaian Journalists have also visited privately-owned operational cement factory and refinery plant under construction both belonging to the Dangote Group of Companies in Africa.

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