Aliko Dangote, a leading businessman in Africa and the president of the Dangote Group, has encouraged African governments to remove all trade and economic barriers to ensure sustainable growth and development on the continent.
The top player in the private sector also reaffirmed Dangote Industries Limited, his pan-African conglomerate,’s unwavering commitment to addressing some of the continent’s and its people’s economic problems.
The organization has invested more than $20 billion in a number of significant African economic sectors in order to achieve this goal.
The large investments, according to Dangote, who disclosed them, are intended to reverse Africa’s economic fortunes in the pursuit of the continent’s sustainable economic growth through free trade and economic integration.
Speaking in Lagos at the launch of a special edition of “The World Ahead 2023” by renowned media outlet The Economist, Dangote, represented by Group Executive Director/Group Chief Risk Officer of Dangote Industries Limited, Dr. Adenike Fajemirokun, stressed that the crucial task of creating a sustainable future that ensures equitable growth and prosperity for all should not be the sole responsibility of the public sector alone but should also involve the private sector.
“Our massive investments of over 20 billion dollars across key industries, including Energy, Agriculture, and Infrastructure.
“Our recently commissioned 3Million Metric Tonnes’ Fertiliser Plant, expansions in cement production, and our soon-to-be commissioned 650,000 barrels per day world’s largest single-train refinery, are all set to empower farmers, foster backward integration, create thousands of jobs, eliminate our dependence on imported products, and improve our nation’s foreign exchange earnings significantly.
“We are also confronting environmental issues through our investment in alternative fuels, as well as unlocking enormous opportunities in the communities where we have our footprints, while ultimately ensuring that we keep delivering huge value to our shareholders.
“The multilayered issues that we face globally and across regions today, ranging from rising energy costs, food insecurity, supply-chain disruptions, access to quality healthcare, cybersecurity, inflation amongst others brought about by the pandemic or other human factors like the Russia-Ukraine war, call for an objective rethink of geopolitics and geo-economics, especially as they vastly affect policy execution and the ease of doing business in more vulnerable economies,” he stated.
Dangote emphasized that the African population has been expanding enormously, calling attention to the need for all hands on deck to lift Africa above the many socio-economic issues facing the member countries.
“Nigeria, for instance, is projected to be the world’s third largest population by 2050 surpassing the United States, only behind India and China, so the question of sustained economic growth has become increasingly critical and isn’t one for a single sector to tackle alone. To secure the future of our country and our continent we must forge strong public-private partnerships and dismantle regional barriers with vehicles like the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).”
He praised “The Economist” for putting the magazine together and called it a great body of work that delivers important data for all sectors to take insights from and synthesize the same in order to arrive at cutting-edge action points.
In his remarks, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, the deputy governor of Lagos State, referred to the publication as a useful resource for decision-makers and strategic planners and noted that it contains information that supports some of the tactics the government of Lagos State has used to establish Lagos as a top investment location.