Aliko Dangote, CEO of Dangote Group. Picture: REUTERS
Aliko Dangote, CEO of Dangote Group. Picture: REUTERS

Accra — Dangote Industries will invest in a $2bn (R29.5bn) phosphate project in Togo, positioning itself to become a main supplier of fertiliser in West Africa.

The company controlled by Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote will mine an estimated two-billion tonnes of phosphate in nearby Togo for processing as much as one-million tonnes of fertiliser a year at a new complex in Lagos, according to a joint statement by the company and the Togolese presidency.

“Under the agreement, Togo will provide access to phosphate resources and the Dangote Group will provide access to ammonia and to the Nigerian market,” the parties said in the statement. Ammonia is a key ingredient in the production of phosphate fertiliser.

Nigeria accounts for as much as 50% of harvested land in West Africa, making it a top market for fertiliser consumption growth, according to London-based commodities consultancy CRU.

Dangote is also planning to build a cement plant with an annual capacity of 1.5-million tonnes in the Togolese capital of Lome, according to the statement. The $60m facility is scheduled to start operating by the end of 2020, using clinker from Togo and Nigeria.