Aliko Dangote to open cement plant in Zimbabwe

Aliko Dangote to open cement plant in Zimbabwe

Nigeria´s Aliko Dangote plans to open a $400 million cement plant in Zimbabwe, which will act as a major boost for the southern African country, which is desperate for foreign investment.

"We´ve already decided to invest into Zimbabwe, that´s why we are here. Any country where you see us visiting it means, yes, we´ve decided to invest," Dangote told. The plant will produce 1.5 mn t of cement a year and if government permission is given, construction will begin in the first quarter of 2016, he said.

The Government has halved its economic growth target for this year to 1.5 per cent, blaming a scorching drought that has hit the key agricul-ture sector. Zimbabwe has been struggling for five years to recover from a catastrophic decade of contraction that was marked by billion per cent hyperinflation and widespread food shortages. Zimplats announced an annual loss recently, for only the second time in its history. Zimbabwe has lagged behind neighbours like Mozambique and Zambia in attracting foreign investment but said it had approved $971 million in foreign investments in the first half of the year versus $555 million a year ago.

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