Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday commissioned a 2.5-billion U.S. dollar fertilizer plant in the country’s Lagos Lekki Free Trade Zone.
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony, the Nigerian president said the Dangote Fertilizer Plant will boost the nation’s foreign exchange earnings and accelerate economic growth.
“This fertilizer plant is further expected to enhance our administration’s drive towards achieving self-sufficiency in food production in the country,” he added.
“It will reduce our dependence on importation of fertilizer, create jobs, increase the inflow of foreign exchange, and accelerate economic growth,” said Buhari.
The president expressed optimism that the investment in the plant would replicate the earlier experience of Dangote Industries Ltd. in the cement sector, where it had become a leading name in Nigeria and across the African continent.
“Dangote Industries Ltd. has created thousands of jobs across Nigeria. It is the second-biggest employer of labor in this country after the federal government, “he added.
“This is very pleasing because job creation by the private sector will help to improve security and take thousands of youth off the streets,” he said.
“The coming on stream of the plant is creating huge opportunities in the areas of job creation, trade, transport, and logistics to earn significant wealth, reduce poverty, and help secure the future of our nation,” said Buhari.
According to him, the agricultural sector was a critical aspect of the economy and the availability and affordability of fertilizer would lead to increased yields for farmers.
On his part, Aliko Dangote, President of Dangote Industries Ltd., said the fertilizer plant would drastically reduce the level of unemployment and youth restiveness through the generation of direct and indirect employment.
The ceremony was attended by government officials, diplomats, and representatives from private companies.