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(Special Report) What manner of backward integration in both cement, sugar?
Just like during the President Goodluck Jonathan era, Nigerians were fooled into believing that as soon as the country achieves backward integration in cement, the price will crash and housing supply will be enhanced.
Fast-forward to current realities. Whereas the country achieved cement backward integration more than six years ago, cement prices are now beyond even wealthy Nigerians and housing supply has become a failed promise.
Since last week till now, Dangote, Flour Mills, BUA had been at war over new sugar refinery in Port Harcourt.
Facts show that Africa’s richest man and Chairman of Dangote Industries Limited, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, and the Chairman of Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc, Mr. John Coumantaros, have said the establishment of a new sugar refinery plant in the country by BUA Group posed a threat to the attainment of the National Sugar Master Plan (NSMP) as well as sustainability of Nigeria’s local sugar industry.
They argued that the country currently has enough refining capacity to meet national demand. In a joint petition to the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Chief Niyi Adebayo, dated January 28, 2021, the duo protested the recent commissioning of a sugar refinery in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, by BUA International, one of the operators in the sugar industry. But in a swift response, Chairman of BUA Group, Alhaji Abdulsamad Rabiu, said the company took serious exception to what he described as the ludicrous claims by his two major competitors, pointing out that his sugar export-focused project in Port Harcourt, would not affect in any way, the backward integration programme, stressing that “the only way it will affect Nigerians is that Nigerians will pay lower prices for sugar.”
The core question now is ‘Should Nigerians take this assurance of the Chairman of BUA Group, Alhaji Abdulsamad Rabiu to the bank?