Before Dangote, BUA got exemption to export cement by land

BUA Cement has received approval to export cement through the country’s borders, TheCable can report.

TheCable understands that BUA Cement got approval before Dangote Cement approached the government to be allowed to export cement through the land borders to Niger and Togo.

Michel Puchercos, chief executive officer of Dangote Cement, had told investors on Monday that the company is now exporting cement in a controlled manner following the government’s approval.

A June 18 letter signed by Victor Dimka, comptroller (enforcement headquarters) for Customs deputy comptroller-general, seen by TheCable, said the approval for BUA was from the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA).

“I am directed to forward herewith a letter from the Office of the National Security Adviser referenced NSA/227/C dated June 17, 2020, on the above subject matter,” the letter read.

“The trucks will exit and return through Illela Border Station in Sokoto Ssate.

“You are to monitor the movement towards ensuring that they are loaded only with cement to Niger Republic and return empty back to Nigeria.”

In October 2019, President Muhammadu Buhari had ordered a closure of the land borders to curb the smuggling of arms, food items, and hard drugs into the country.

The closure, which is meant to boost local production and strengthen security, has taken a significant toll on neighbouring countries such as Togo, Ghana, and Cote D’Ivoire that rely on Nigeria’s market of over 200 million people.

Nigerian businesses have also not been able to export their products through the land borders as a result of the closure.

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