How Aliko Dangote planned to squeeze $30 billion profit from Nigeria in two years

At the beginning of 2020, Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote told reporters he projected a turnover of $30 billion for his businesses over the next two years.

At the time, his company – Dangote Group has an annual turnover of about $4 billion, and upon the completion and running of the refinery, fertilizer, petrochemicals and other businesses, the company’s turnover should be about $30 billion in the next two years.

The Dangote Refinery Complex is an ambitious $12 billion project which has been touted to have the single biggest impact on Nigeria’s economy as it is expected to be a lasting solution to the country’s heavy dependence on the importation of petroleum products for domestic consumption.

The refinery with its 650,000 barrels per day (bpd) capacity is said to be the single largest in the world. When completed, the facility will meet all of Nigeria’s petroleum needs and still have excess for export. Crude oil will be fractionally distilled into 10.4 million tonnes (Mt) of gasoline, 4.6Mt of diesel, and 4Mt of jet fuel a year.

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It will also annually produce 0.69Mt of polypropylene, 0.24Mt of propane, 32,000t of Sulphur, and 0.5Mt of carbon black feed.

As early as next month, the urea fertilizer plant of the complex is expected to start production. The $2.5 billion Fertilizer plant is expected to manufacture 3 million metric tonnes of urea per annum, with a core focus on the reduction of Nigeria’s fertilizer imports, and $400m annual foreign exchange from export to other African countries. In total, the fertilizer plant alone is expected to contribute over $1 billion per annum to the Nigerian economy.

Speaking on the importance of agriculture, Dangote said: “We have massive arable land, we have water; we have the right climate; so, the population growth does not really make me nervous. So, I think the federal government is doing very well by focusing more on the agricultural sector. We just have to tilt towards agriculture and manufacturing as against our oil-reliant economy.”

He also praised the government’s drive in getting more revenue from taxes, noting that the restructuring of the nation’s tax system will generate more revenue for the government.

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He stated: “Sixty percent of the government revenue is coming from oil but the government is doing quite a lot to diversify the economy by even trying to restructure the tax system because we need to make more money from taxes because as it is now, the taxes generation in Nigeria is a bit low but the government is on the right track with these innovations.”

According to the latest Forbes’ Africa Billionaires List for 2021, Aliko Dangote is the richest man in Africa for the tenth year in a row with a net worth of $12.1 billion.

Dangote holds significant stake in Dangote Cement, Dangote Sugar, Nascon Allied Industries and Dangote Flour Mills among many others.

He incorporated his business, importing and selling cement at the age of 21, and began cement manufacturing his own cement in the 1990s.

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