Nepal: Dangote starts preparations to set up cement plant

Bya897204973

Updated Fri, 06 Feb 2015 14:13:55 GMT

A team of technical experts from Nigeria's Dangote Group recently visited potential sites in Makawanpur and Dhading Districts to study the feasibility of opening a cement plant there.

The team, composed of civil engineers, geologists and mine experts, visited different sites in the district, according to K R Rao, team leader of director of Dangote Group's Cement Production Division. According to Rao, the team has sent limestone samples collected from the sites for laboratory tests. He said that Dangote would choose the project site and start land acquisition process within two months.

Dangote plans to open a 6000t/day capacity cement plant in Nepal, which would be the 15th country for Dangote's cement plant operations. The government has already approved the proposal to invest US$550m to establish a cement plant. For the purpose, the group has registered 'Dangote Cement Nepal Private Limited' at the Office of Company Registrar.

"We will start cement production by June 2017. Our product will be of high quality as we will put in place a high-tech quality control mechanism. Similarly, we are adopting vertical roller mill technology, which is a modern and efficient technology," said Rao. He added that Dangote has seen cement market in Nepal growing. "We expect the market to grow to 6Mt/yr by 2020." Nepal currently consumes 3.5Mt/yr of cement and imports 1.5Mt/yr. However, with big plants coming up, experts say that the country will soon be able to start cement to neighbouring countries. "We are eying the markets in Bihar and Utter Pradesh in India," said Rao.

As the government has prioritised infrastructure development, mega projects like hydropower plants, road, airport and irrigation projects are being implemented in different parts of Nepal. These projects are likely to propel demand for cement and other construction materials in the near future.

Dangote Group's technical officials have not yet decided on an alternative power supply for the proposed plant. "Though our initial plan was to invest in hydropower project, we have aborted it as it takes lot of time to develop. We are thinking of investing in coal or diesel-fed power plants to arrange a stable power supply," said Rao. The proposed plant needs a 35MW supply of uninterrupted power.