President Muhammadu Buhari, on Tuesday, declared that Nigeria’s dependence on imported products in the agriculture sector will soon be a thing of the past with the inauguration of Dangote Fertilizer Plant, which has an installed capacity of 3.0 million metric tonnes of Urea per annum.
Speaking at the commissioning of the plant in Ibeju Lekki, Lagos State, the President said the plant will further advance Nigeria’s drive towards achieving self-sufficiency in food production, create jobs, increase the inflow of foreign exchange and accelerate economic growth.
He expressed confidence that the investment in the plant will replicate the Group’s earlier exploits in the cement sector, noting that it is Africa’s largest plant and second largest in the world.
‘‘This new plant is a renewed testament to the widely acknowledged patriotism of Alhaji Aliko Dangote and the leadership of Dangote Industries Limited. It also demonstrates their commitment to the socio-economic development of our country and the well-being of our people. It has effectively ended Nigeria’s dependence on imported cement products.
‘‘This is very pleasing because job creation by private sector operators is vital to security as it takes thousands of youths off the street,’’ he said.
The President expressed delight that with the commencement of exports to other countries including the United States, India, and Brazil, Nigeria is already gaining extensively in earnings of foreign exchange from the excess production of, and export from the plant.
He added ‘‘We expect the rise of a new breed of agropreneurs who will add value to farming and make the nation self-sufficient in food production.”
‘‘I look forward to coming back to inaugurate the Refinery and petrochemical plant later in the year.
After the historic inauguration, President Buhari inspected the Group’s 650,000 barrels per day Petroleum Refinery and 900,000 tonnes per annum Polypropylene Plant sited within the Dangote Free Trade Zone Complex.
In his remarks, Dangote said the fertilizer complex, which occupies 500 hectares and was built at a cost of $2.5 billion will drastically reduce the level of unemployment and youth restiveness in the country, through the generation of direct and indirect employment.
He said ”Our goal is to make fertilizer available in sufficient quantities and quality for our teeming farmers assuring greater agricultural output”.