Aliko Dangote, has said the nation’s quest to diversify the nation’s economy might not be possible if there is no foreign exchange available for private sectors to work with – Dangote said 98% of Nigeria’s demand for dairy products is currently being imported, stressing that plans are already on ground to turn around the nation’s milk industry in the next three years has said the nation’s quest to diversify the nation’s economy might not be possible if there is no foreign exchange available for private sectors to work with.
Mr Dangote state this during a courtesy visit by Executive MBA students of the Lagos Business School (LBS) to his refinery in Lagos. He however expressed hope in the country getting out of its present precarious state sooner than expected, but stressed that this feat can only be achieved if the right support is given to the Organised Private Sector (OPS) of the economy in terms of adequate foreign exchange supply, infrastructural development, consistent and favourable economic policies.
“Nigeria has what it takes to be great again. I believe so much in the Nigerian economy and if the right things are done, we should get out of the economic recession by 1st quarter in 2017. The private sector is huge and I think we will get out of the recession as soon as possible,” he said. Mr Dangote said 98% of Nigeria’s demand for dairy products is currently being imported, stressing that plans are already on ground to turn around the nation’s milk industry in the next three years.
“We are already discussing with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to kick start this project. We believe we can do a lot to bridge the importation gap developing local production of this product because we have the competitive and comparative advantage,” he said.
He also spoke about how his company, Dangote group has grown from a commodity trading company to a more diversified conglomerate over the last two decades. He added that , adding that his company has been underpinned by five key pillars which he said is to provide basic needs, substitute imports and earn foreign exchange from exports, execute efficiently new plants and technologies, operate effectively by entering new markets with high quality products, entering into strategic partnerships and investing in human capacity development. “We are top 10 in Africa and top 400 globally. We are globally competitive, growing local capacity, manufacturing quality products, rapidly transforming from a Nigerian company to a dominant African brand and our revenues and profitability have continued to grow,” he said.
He stated that the group is driving six major projects which will create 250,000 jobs and provide foreign exchange earnings, while also saving about $15 billion for the country. “We are investing a total investment of $20 billion across the six projects in the country,” he said.