Nigeria’s Dangote Industries, Five Others Apply for Mining License in Ethiopia

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Photo: Aliko Dangote, CEO of Dangote Group

Dangote Industries Plc, the the largest industrial conglomerate in West Africa, last week applied for an exploration license that would enable it to prospect for silica.

Silica is the main ingredient used to produce products from glass. Dangote Industries applied to be given silica exploration license with the view to establishing glass manufacturing plants.

Dangote Cement Plc recently commenced work on a 400 million dollar cement manufacturing plant in Ethiopia. The cement factory, with an installed production capacity of 1.5 million tons per annum, is located in Mugher town, 30 km north of Addis Ababa.

Founded in 1981, the Dangote Group is the largest industrial conglomerate in West Africa and one of the largest in Africa. Headquartered in Lagos, Nigeria, it generates revenue in excess of two billion dollars. The group is one of the leading diversified business conglomerates in Africa. It employs in excess of 11,000 people.

The Dangote Group is a diversified conglomerate with interests across a range of sectors in Africa. Current interests include cement, sugar, flour, salt, pasta, beverages and real estate, with new projects in development in the oil and natural gas, telecommunications, fertilizer and steel. The Group focuses on provision of local, value-added products and services that meet the needs of the African population.

Dangote Cement, the largest cement production company in Africa, with a market capitalization of almost 14 billion on the Nigeria Stock Exchange, has subsidiaries in Benin, Cameroon, Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa, Ethiopia and Zambia. In December 2010, the group signed an agreement with the Government of Zambia to construct a 400 million dollar cement plant in Zambia. Once completed in June 2013, as anticipated, the new plant is expected to have an annual output of 1.5 million metric tonns of cement. The Dangote Group has 18 subsidiary companies.

The Ministry of Mines suspended accepting applications for minerals exploration licenses a year and a half ago. The ministry resumed accepting applications two weeks ago.

Bacha Fuji, public relations head with the ministry, told The Reporter that six companies had applied for exploration licenses in the past two weeks.

The ministry suspended issuing mining licenses a year and a half ago saying that it faced a dearth of professionals and it also wanted to clear piles of applications. The ministry began accepting applications from companies two weeks ago.

In addition to Dangote Industries five foreign and local companies applied for minerals exploration licenses. An Indian company, Allied Chemicals Plc, applied for iron ore exploration license, a company established by Ethiopian and German investors, Rusf Gladwuneya Gold mining Plc, applied for gold exploration license, an Australian company Ore Corp Minerals Plc, Sekota Mining Plc, Ethiopian mining company and MSB Steel Plc, Indian mining firm, asked for iron ore exploration licenses.

Bacha said that the ministry accepted the companies’ applications and it is currently evaluating them. The Ministry of Mines so far granted 245 exploration licenses to 135 companies – 66 of them local. Minister of Mines Sinkenesh Ejigu recently said the government wants to use the mining sector as an engine of growth. Ethiopia anticipates to earn 849 million dollars from minerals export – with gold with the lion’s share.

Source: The Reporter