Bottlenecks at border making intra-Africa trade difficult, says Dangote Group president

Published 06 Sep,2021 via BizWatchNigeria - The President of the Dangote Group, Mr. Aliko Dangote, says barriers at the nation’s border are making movement of goods to other African countries for trade burdensome.

According to him, most countries prefer to ship their goods from China than face the hassles at the borders.

He made this known while speaking at the High-Level Roundtable Discussion on Industrialisation in Africa, organised by the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) as part of the activities to mark its 50th anniversary.

Dangote made this disclosure during a “High-Level Roundtable Discussion on Industrialisation in Africa,” which was organised by the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) as part of the activities to mark its 50thanniversary celebration.

He said, “Today, it takes us two weeks to go to Ghana from Nigeria, which is something we are supposed to do in 10 to 12 hours. You invest in trucks to take cement to Ghana and it takes you two weeks and going to Lome in Togo, which is about 270 kilometers from Lagos, is taking us 10 days today as we speak.

“If that is the case we are not going to be competitive. You are talking about gas? Our gas prices here are almost double than other normal areas.

“So, how can we be competitive? Government has to do quite a lot in terms of having the political will to remove all these bottlenecks at the borders.

“So, I think that there are quite a lot of areas we have to look at to make this thing competitive. The border crossing is the most important one for us. We must make sure that crossing our borders does not take time.

It will not make sense at all if it is going to take time. People would rather ship from China straight into their markets. So, we will never be competitive if we do not do that. We actually need to work with the government to remove these bottlenecks, which will need a lot of political will by governments,” Dangote said.

He added that the opportunities in African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) will earn his business about $12 billion per annum.

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