With a national annual import of over $337 million, the management of Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc has declared its commitment to the Backward Integration Policy (BIP) of the federal government to reverse the trend and make Nigeria self-sufficient in sugar production.
The company, which is committing over $700m to its sugar projects, told visiting members of the Nasarawa House of Assembly at the weekend that the company’s investments in sugar will revolutionize the economy of the state.
The state lawmakers commended Dangote Group for the choice of the state for the project and the accelerated pace of project execution, the group said in a statement.
General Manager for the Backward Integration Project, Dangote Sugar, Mr. John Beverley said when the factory is fully operational, it would have the capacity to crush 12,000 tons of cane per day, while 90 megawatts of power will be generated for both the company’s use and for the host communities.
Some 500-kilometer roads will be constructed to ease transportation within the vicinity.
Beverley however urged the lawmakers to help in controlling the menace of land encroachment by settlers and farmers.
He said the company has been carrying out Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) projects in the communities, pointing out that so far it has constructed boreholes, schools, clinics and awarded scholarships among other services.
Speaker of Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon. Ibrahim Balarabe Abdullah, who led the team round the 78,000 hectares BIP project in Tunga, Awe LGA, said the $500m so far expended by Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc in the state is a blessing to Nigeria.
He also said the news that the project would create about 150,000 jobs is a welcome one.
The General Manager, Government and Stakeholders Relations, Mr. Bello Dan Musa, said the President of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote, is passionate about lifting Nigeria’s economy through strategic investment and job creation.
When completed, the group said, the plant will be the largest in Nigeria and that phase II will make it the largest sugar refining plant in Africa.