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If we knew what we were getting involved in, we wouldn’t have… — Dangote

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Dangote Cement Plc, the multinational cement giant, majority owned by Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote, maintained strong momentum

Size
For context, it is a 650,000 barrel refinery, the biggest in the world. It started in 2016.

Inside the plant itself, Aliko Dangote constructed about 126 km of road. There are 54,000 storm columns built for protection. On-site, there are over 200 buildings. Located in Ibeju-Lekki, Lagos, covering a land area of approximately 2,635 hectares (seven times the size of Victoria Island, Lagos), it is the world’s Largest Single-Train 650,000 barrels per day Petroleum Refinery with 900,000 tonnes Polypropylene Plant. At the peak of construction, there were over 70,000 workers on site.

In the course of the civil works, some 700 piles were drilled daily, and the total number of piles came to 250,000. It has 177 tanks of 4.742 billion litre capacity – you can imagine that volume. He has bought over 2,262 units of various high-duty equipment to enhance the local capacity for site works since even the biggest local civil contractors are unable to handle “even small portions of our construction requirement.” He has also bought 308 cranes to build up equipment installation capacity since the current capacity in Nigeria is extremely poor. What do you do when the biggest crane in the country is 650 tons, whereas you need a 5000-ton capacity crane? Worse, there were only two such 5000-ton capacity cranes in the world, and they were in use. So, instead of hiring a crane for $300,000 a day, what do you do? Dangote bought his cranes. 65 Million Cubic Metres of Sand were dredged costing approximately 300 Million Euros, using the world’s largest, the second largest and the tenth largest dredgers to elevate the height by 1.5/1.75 metres, to insure against any potential impact of increase in mean sea level due to global warming.

That is not all.

The refinery has a 435 MW Power Plant, which can meet the total power requirement of Ibadan DisCo of 860,316 MWh covering five states, including Oyo, Ogun, Osun, Kwara and Ekiti. Dangote Petroleum Refinery can meet 100% of the Nigerian requirement of all refined products (Gasoline, 53 million litres per day; Diesel, 34 million litres per day; Kerosene, 10 million litres per day and Aviation Jet A1, 2 million litres per day) and also have surplus of each of these products for export.

Aliko Dangote On CNN
So, if Aliko Dangote, President and Chief Executive of Dangote Industries Limited, and Africa’s richest man, says, in retrospect, that had he known the grand scope of what he was getting involved in, he wouldn’t have tried it, you would understand.

READ ALSO  Report: Dangote refinery gets 5m barrels of crude oil from US

According to Dangote, during an interview on a CNN programme, Connecting Africa, “People don’t really understand what we undertook to build the refinery. In fact, we didn’t know what we were getting into. If we knew, we would have run away. We wouldn’t have tried it. It was very, very, very tough. We are sitting on a land that is more than 4000 standard football fields. The significance of this project is that we will be self-sufficient, not just in Nigeria but in West and Central Africa. I feel proud as an African that I’ve been able to prove that it can be done and we have done it.”

$19 billion cost
Speaking on what it has taken to put up the edifice, he said “we spent about $19 billion. It is going to change the game in terms of improvement. If we take in all the crude from Nigeria, it means that we will be taking about 21 million barrels per month. That would also help in terms of reducing the Co2 initiative, rather than ships coming all the way from Europe to bring in products. All the ships going out of Nigeria every month, then you have the products coming into Nigeria. In totality, when you calculate, you are talking about 480 ships of 1 million barrels. That actually will save the environment almost 1.5 to 2 million tonnes of Co2 emissions.”

Asked whether he has started making money from the project, he said: “We will start making money soon. It is not just all about making money, but it also gives us great satisfaction that we are making Africa great. We are making Africa proud.”

AfCFTA & Overcoming challenges
There has always been the issue of crude supply, and this was discussed during the interview. In his view, he agreed “that there are challenges here and there. That is the truth. We have to be very open too.

NNPC has been very, very helpful. They do their own bit. Some of the IOCs are struggling to give us crude oil. Because everybody is used to exporting, and nobody wants to stop exporting”.

Even Aliko Dangote himself asked Eleni Giokos, the CNN anchor, “Why do you think Africa is not growing as it should?”

Dangote answered the question himself: “It is because we export raw materials and import finished goods. It doesn’t matter what it is, whether it is gold or whatever. A raw material is always at a ridiculously priced amount compared to the finished goods.”

READ ALSO  Why we prioritised $7.5b FX backlog clearance, by Cardoso

Asked how he hopes to battle this legacy system that profits from the ripoff of focusing on Africa’s raw materials instead of building capacity for processing on the continent, Dangote said “I have been fighting battles all my life, so I don’t get scared of anything.”

On the African Continental Free Trade Area, AfCFTA, Dangote believes it will be beneficial: “The AfCFTA will be very, very beneficial. If you are talking about benefits, our company will almost be one of the top five in terms of benefitting from the free trade agreement. But I have not seen any improvement. We have 3 million tonnes of Urea we export to African countries, and we have petroleum products to export. We have cement to export. We have too many things to export. What makes sense is to have the free trade agreement work. The trade between Africans is only about 16 per cent, which is too low. We have to make sure that all the regional markets have to remove these requirements of visas. We have to allow free movement of people, free movement of goods and services, and the Afcta will work. Without that, it is almost impossible.”

Intra-Africa trade issues
Dangote then shared an experience: “I am going to Egypt tomorrow, but I need a visa. They are saying that they will give me a visa on arrival if I have an American visa. But I am an African, and Egypt is part and parcel of AfCFTA. But they are saying that no, if you have an American visa, we will give you. So, they are discounting me, being an African. So, how do we trade if you’re not allowing me into their country? What I would love to see is a South African come into Nigeria to get a job without hassle. If you don’t integrate, we will never see what we call prosperity. Integration is very important. If you remember, most countries used to have what we call the Ministry of Integration, but I don’t know what happened. Some of the countries have dropped this, and it doesn’t make sense.”

Aliko Dangote has his eyes set on the future with the succession plan of the group well laid. According to him, “by the end of the year, he expects that the group’s revenue should be around $ 30 billion, thereby placing the company among the best 120 companies in the world.”

PMS delivery date
Last week, during a visit by the leadership of the senate, led by Senate President Godswill Akpabio, to the premises of Dangote Refinery, some of the legislators who had not visited the site were left to marvel at the size of the complex. The question always asked by Nigerians about the refinery is focused mainly on the delivery day when Premium Motor Spirit, PMS (otherwise known as petrol) would flow. Yes, they should be concerned, not with the price of petrol hovering around N600 and 800 per litre, depending on which part of the country you reside or you are to buy from.

READ ALSO  CBN sells $122.67m to 46 authorised dealers

In responding to the question, Dangote explained: “It is good for us to test all the types of crudes that we are receiving. You know sometimes you can buy crude and people can give you the one that has a lot of metal or a lot of sulphur. But the most important thing is that we know West Africa is a home for dumped bad fuel and bad Petroleum products. This lab that we have here you can not even find it in Saudi Aramco because we have the latest and we can test anything be it aviation fuel, diesel, gasoline and kerosene and it will give you the actual result. The longest time a test will take here is 30 mins. As for PMS, it will start coming out by 10/15 of July. We want to keep it in the tank to make sure that it settles, and by the third week in July, we want to be able to take it into the market.”

Revelations from Afreximbank meeting in Bahamas
Last week, Dangote made some disclosures at the Afreximbank Annual Meetings, Dangote likened the oil cartels to a mafia stronger than the drug mafia hell-bent on maintaining their grip on the industry.

He said: “Well, I knew that there would be a fight. But I didn’t know that the mafia in oil, they are stronger than the mafia in drugs. I can tell you that. Yes, it’s a fact. But I’m a person who has been fighting all my life. You know, so I think it’s part of my life to fight. As a matter of fact, during the COVID period, some of the international banks really were looking forward to making sure that they pushed us into the default of our loans so that the project would just be dead. And that didn’t happen with the help of banks like Afreximbank.”

Dangote also disclosed that he has paid off $2.4bn of the $5.5bn borrowed for the Lagos-based refinery.

 

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CBN sells $122.67m to 46 authorised dealers

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has retrenched approximately 200 employees across various departments in a bank-wide restructuring

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said it has sold $122.671 million dollars to to 46 authorised dealers in its determination to promote stability and reduce market volatility in the foreign exchange market.

A statement signed by the Bank’s Director in charge of Financial Markets, Dr. Omolara Duke, disclosed that $67 million was sold to 27 Authorised Dealers, while $2.5 million was bought from one Authorised Dealer on July 10, 2024. The range of the bid for the July 10, 2024 sales was N1,480/$ and N1,500/$, while the value date for the payments, going by the settlement cycle of two days (T+2), is July 12, 2024.

Similarly, on July 11, 2024, the sum of $55.171 million was sold to 19 Authorised Dealers at N1,540.0/$, and no FX was purchased. The value date for the payments of the spot sale is July 15, 2024.

The statement, therefore, urged all Authorised Dealers to ensure that foreign exchange purchases from the CBN are used exclusively for trade-backed transactions, which should be reported within 72 hours.

While reiterating that the CBN supplies foreign exchange to the Foreign Exchange (FX) market to improve liquidity through FX spot sales to Authorized Dealers using two-way quotes, it assured that the Bank will continue to ensure stability in the FX market.

 

READ ALSO  Report: Dangote refinery gets 5m barrels of crude oil from US
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Report: Dangote refinery gets 5m barrels of crude oil from US

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Dangote Petroleum Refinery has announced a further reduction of the price of diesel from 1200 to 1,000 naira per litre.

Dangote refinery has purchased 5 million barrels of US crude scheduled for delivery next month and in September, Bloomberg is reporting.

According to the report on July 11, the refining company also started a tender process in which it intends to buy a further 6 million barrels of American crude for September.

Dangote refinery, according to the report, has bought more than 16 million barrels of West Texas Intermediate crude oil so far this year.

In August and September, the proportion it will purchase from the US may increase, according to tenders for new supply seen by Bloomberg.

“For Nigeria and Dangote, the use of US crude likely reflects where there are spare barrels available to buy in the world and the most competitive price,” the report reads.

“The refinery has been billed as a way of helping Nigeria wean itself off foreign fuel supplies.

“The refinery near Lagos mostly runs on local crude supplies that can reach the plant from offshore terminals in as little as a couple of days.”

The report said tracking data indicates that the refinery took in more than 41 million barrels of feedstock in the first half of the year as it completed test runs and gradually raised processing rates.

About a quarter of that has been American supply, according to Bloomberg.

With the latest purchase, Bloomberg said the inflows of American feedstock may increase significantly.

In May, the refinery planned a purchase of 24 million barrels of crude from the US for over a year.

READ ALSO  CBN sells $122.67m to 46 authorised dealers

Source: The Cable

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Why we prioritised $7.5b FX backlog clearance, by Cardoso

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CBN raises capital base for mega banks to N500bn

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) decided to settle $7.5 billion forex backlog owed, to build investor confidence in the domestic economy and build lasting credibility for the country.

CBN Governor, Olayemi Cardoso disclosed this yesterday during the BusinessDay CEO Forum 2024 with the theme: “Leadership In Tough Economic Times”, held in Lagos.

Speaking during the Fireside discussion, the CBN boss said he was advised against making the backlog clearance a priority at the inception of his tenure, because of the impact it will have on the country’s dollar position.

“People thought, there was no need to prioritise the forex backlog clearance,” he said, “ but they failed to realise that the country was in a state of crisis, and loss of confidence.”

He said: “ Even without that, it is important, that you hold high your integrity. As a bank, your yes, must be yes, that is a big major step in building credibility. It is very tempting to push that aside, but ultimately, I was convinced that if we did not do that at that time, we would pay the price as a country.”

Cardozo said findings also showed that clearing of the FX backlog improved the country’s outlook, adding that foreign investors as well as multilateral organizations, such as the World Bank see this move as a bold intervention to improve the economy’s sustainability in the long run.

On the state of the naira, the CBN boss said that by the time he assumed leadership of the apex bank, the forex market was dominated by people who did not follow policy guidelines.

READ ALSO  Why we prioritised $7.5b FX backlog clearance, by Cardoso

His words: “When we assumed leadership at the CBN, we saw distortions from illicit flows, people not abiding by the rules, and it was very important we addressed that to make the market much better. We found pushback, as people who did things in a certain ways wanted to continue.

”He said at that time, a good number of investors came in, left and returned after they understood the CBN’s plans.

He said a lot of the swings in the market are beginning to settle because investors have a better understanding of the Nigerian market place.

“It is important for those on the other side to recognise that we will continue with what we are doing. We believe that with time, stakeholders are becoming more comfortable with the way the market is being run,” he said.

On the CBN’s policy that mandated International Oil Companies (IOCs) on how to repatriate their funds, he said the policy had push back.

He said the there was dialogue between the apex bank and IOCs, adding that the reassurances calmed them down, stating that more forex contributions are being expected from the oil sector.

On why the CBN insisted that retained earnings should not be part of banks’ recapitalisation capital, Cardoso said it was the need to ensure that the exercise produces resilient banking system.

“As long as I can see, the banks had enough time to prepare for this. Two years is a long time. They should take their time, no need to be in any rush. We want to build a resilient banking system, and that’s not what you would like to do overnight,” he said.

READ ALSO  CBN sells $122.67m to 46 authorised dealers

Cardoso said the banks horizon has been expanded to accommodate different kinds of services. “We have no doubt that we must move to a more transparent system, in the banking industry, and the retained earnings exclusion will help achieve that,” he said.

The CBN chief also spoke on the rising interest rate and impact on economic growth. According to him, the interest rate is not set by the CBN, but the MPC which comprise of independent minded thinking people.

“The MPC members are people who are not given to emotion, but data. They go along with what the data say. The MPC has said their major target is to rein in inflation. We were all there when a lot of money got into the system. We saw the Ways and Means went into N27 trillion. We saw intervention funds stood at N10.5 trillion. These policies have their consequences,” he said.

He however, said that month-on-month inflation rate has dropped by 50 per cent and that remains a good signal for the economy, adding that doing things right, will help the country to achieve its desired economic growth.

Speaking on the qualities that may have contributed toward his being made CBN governor, he said it is his commitment to policies that impact positively on the lives of the people.

“One particular thing is very dear to me. As a policy maker, I am very, very committed, to one thing, and that is that at the end of the day, we make policies that impact positively on the man on the street,” he said, pointing out that listening is one very important attitude of his leadership style.

READ ALSO  Report: Dangote refinery gets 5m barrels of crude oil from US

“Also, communication is important. Nobody needs to tell you that you need to come out there to talk to the people. We have continued to talk to the media, to give an idea on the way forward,” he stated.

Source: The nation

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Dangote Refinery seeks fresh 11 million barrels US oil amid Nigeria’s struggles

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Dangote Petroleum Refinery on Tuesday announced a further reduction in the prices of both diesel and aviation fuel to N940, and N980 per

The Dangote Refinery has announced plans to acquire an additional 11 million barrels of crude oil from the United States, in a move that underscores Nigeria’s persistent oil production challenges.

The refinery, a cornerstone of the country’s ambition to become a net exporter of petroleum products, has found it necessary to supplement domestic supply with imports to meet its operational needs.

In a tender seen by Bloomberg, Dangote purchased five million barrels of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) Midland crude for delivery next month and in September. The company also started a tender process in which it’s looking to buy a further six million barrels of American crude for September.

The refinery near Lagos mostly runs on local crude supplies that can reach the plant from offshore terminals in as little as a couple of days.

It took in more than 41 million barrels of feedstock in the first half of the year as it completed test runs and gradually increased processing rates, tanker-tracking data show. Of that, about a quarter has been American supply.

Aliko Dangote, the chairman of Dangote Group said the refinery will continue to import crude oil as his refinery scales up production and seeks alternative supply contracts.

“It also makes economic sense for us to tender for crude. If we could source 100 percent Nigerian crude, then fine, but we can’t wait,” Dangote said at the Africa CEO Forum 2024.

“There is a bit of a problem for us to source the entire volume of crude that we’re looking for domestically because we need different types and mixes. Unless crude production improves – which we pray and hope for – we need to go elsewhere,” Dangote added.

READ ALSO  CBN sells $122.67m to 46 authorised dealers

According to CAS, the refinery took delivery of 11 WTI cargoes, or 9 million barrels, between February and May, contrasting with around 18 million barrels of Nigerian crude deliveries.

Now, the move to secure a longer-term offtake agreement signals a commitment by the refinery to more permanently diversify its crude sources, coinciding with a period of extreme demand weakness for Nigerian supply.

“It’s a little surprising that they are seeking term WTI at this stage,” said one West African crude trader, noting demand weakness that pushed Nigeria’s flagship Bonny Light crude to a discount to Dated Brent for the first time since November on May. 17.

Nigeria’s state-run Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC), also 20 percent equity holder in the project, has been widely expected to supply the bulk of Dangote’s crude demands, selling to the refinery in USD due to its location in the Lekki free zone.

But findings showed NNPC has struggled to meet its 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude oil obligation to acquire a 20 percent stake in the Dangote Refinery.

The nation pumped about 1.28million barrels a day of crude and liquids in June, still far below its estimated production capacity of 2.6 million barrels a day. Crude theft, aging oil pipelines, low investment, and divestments from oil majors operating in the West African nation have all contributed to declining production.

Despite various assurances by the federal government and the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) of meeting the country’s Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) quota, Nigeria recorded an estimated 30 million barrels underproduction in the first four months of 2024.

READ ALSO  Report: Dangote refinery gets 5m barrels of crude oil from US

Despite massive spending to curb insecurity in the Niger Delta by the NNPC and the federal government, oil theft, assets vandalism and outright sabotage are rampant in the area where Nigeria extracts its oil from.

The country currently has a multi-billion-naira contract with local security groups in the region aside from the huge spending on the official security agencies deployed to curb the menace in the area.

Source: Business Day

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Monetary policy rate hikes stabilised the economy — Cardoso

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Central Bank of Nigeria

Olayemi Cardoso, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, has said that the Monetary Policy Committee’s hikes in interest rates were timely in stabilising the economy.

Speaking at the ongoing CEO Forum on the topic, ‘Revitalising Nigeria’s economy: strategic monetary policies for economic growth’ hosted by BusinessDay Media, he stated that the MPC is focused on taming the inflation rate and stabilising the naira.

He said, “The MPC is not oblivious to the fact that the country does need growth. If these hikes hadn’t been done at the time, the naira would have almost tipped over, so it helped to stabilise the Naira.

“Interest rates are not set by the CBN governor but by the MPC committee composed of independent-minded people. These are people not given to emotion but to data. The MPC clarified that the major issue is taming inflation, and they would do what is necessary to tame it.”

The Monetary Policy Committee has raised the MPR by a total of 650 basis points, bringing the rate to 26.25 percent in May 2024. According to the CBN governor, the hikes were necessary to soak up excess liquidity in the economy and will be short-lived, as the month-to-month inflation rate has already declined by 50 percent in 6 months, showing results.

“Sadly, we have a situation where ways and means soared to N27 trillion and interventions went to N10.5 trillion. Those have consequences. In a large respect, that’s what we’re paying for now. It is also a timely issue. It’s not something that I expect will remain with us forever. The ability to soak up the excess liquidity over time is also important to the MPC,” he said.

READ ALSO  Why we prioritised $7.5b FX backlog clearance, by Cardoso

Speaking on the issue of FX Volatility, Cardoso stated that the bank had to correct some dysfunctions in the financial system, such as illicit flows and people not abiding by the rules, to ensure market stability.

“Sometimes, there’s pushback from those who want to continue doing things a certain way. There’s also that need to show people that there will be consistency in our ways before the market will settle,” he said.

He noted that timely communication and market transparency have restored stakeholders’ confidence.

“There is no more front-loading of FX requests. Even the portfolio investors who left came back again. They were comfortable that there was a plan and that the plan was headed in a certain direction. These dysfunctions are beginning to smooth out due to the confidence and transparency seen in the markets,” the CBN governor said.

Source: Business day

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We’re here to stay, says Guinness

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We’re here to stay, says Guinness

Managing Director of Guinness Nigeria Plc, Adebayo Alli, has said the company is not planing to leave the country.

Alli noted the Guinness is improving despite challenges.

He hailed the firm’s trade partners for their collaboration towards its objectives, which have sustained its growth.

Alli spoke at a two-day event to mark Guinness Nigeria Trading Year 2024, which featured a conference/business meeting, gala and award night, at Eko Convention Centre, Lagos.

He applauded the partners, drawn from for their doggedness, despite challenging economic climate, saying Guinness has continued to experience exponential growth.

The managing director unveiled Guinness Nigeria’s new mission: “GN Transformed: Winning Differently,” allaying fears it may leave Nigeria.

Alli said: “We want to thank our partners for dedication to our business this past year.

“We know it hasn’t been smooth sailing, but your support has sustained our growth.

“Despite a challenging economic climate with inflation, currency issues, and lower consumer spending, Guinness Nigeria has grown.

“Moving forward, we will work with our partners to create products for Nigerians…’’

Introducing the mission statement for 2025, Commercial Director, Olusanya Adesanya, noted: “Guinness does not win alone. We win with our partners, customers, consumers, and communities.”

Adesanya said the mission reflects Guinness’ commitment to innovation, customer-centricity, resilience, empowerment, and growth.

Highlight of the awards was recognition of trade partners and employees.

Top performers received cash for their sales achievements and performance.

Among awards presented was CEO Award for Employee of the Year, won by Head of Commercial Finance, Mrs. Chinenye Alawode. Dr. Edmond Okafor of Eddinho Nig, was named Overall Best Distributor.

READ ALSO  Report: Dangote refinery gets 5m barrels of crude oil from US

Source: The Nation

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