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CEMENT IMPORTATION: MASSIVE JOB LOSS LOOMS

By NBF News
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http://www.nigerianbestforum.com/blog/?attachment_id=122068 Hundreds of thousands of working Nigerians may soon join the saturated labour market, if feelers from the cement manufacturing sub-sector are anything to go by, as more of the manufacturers are scaling down production and significantly reducing their capacity as a result of glut in the cementmarket.

This is coming on the heels of a recent World Bank and International Finance Corporation (IFC) ranking that Nigeria has failed to improve in its Ease of Doing Business Survey.

With the Dangote Gboko Plant shut and the reduction in capacity in LafargeEwekoro Plant, it is obvious that more workers would soon be asked to go.

A statement from the Dangote Group said its four million metric tonnes Gboko plant that employs thousands in direct and indirect labour may remain shut owing to the glutted market caused by the importation of the commodity.

Dangote Group is the biggest employer of labour in Nigeria outside government.

Similarly, 50 percent of Lafarge's Shagamu plant has been shut-down due to the same reason.

Lafarge factories have excess cement and clinker inventory at their plants of about 300,000 metric tons, which could not be absorbed by the Nigerian market, a statement said.

More cement plants are also bracing up to close shops as the market is being over-supplied with imported and inferior products.

Dunlop and Michelin companies as well as the textile sector were forced to close shop in Nigeria due to importation and unfavourable business environment.

Cement Manufacturer Association of Nigeria (CMAN) has warned that Nigeria risked losing huge investment as a result of the unnecessary importation of cement.

Chairman of CMAN Joseph Makoju, was quoted as saying: 'Energy cost accounts for over 35 per cent of production cost in Nigeria, whereas it is 10 per cent in China.