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Dangote Cement to generate power in Tanzania

By on November 6, 2014

Sub-Saharan Africa cement producer, Dangote Cement, is currently not finding things easy in its quest to grow operations on the continent. The company is said to be constrained by power supply issues, and is seeking to generate its electricity in some African countries.

On Tuesday, Dangote Cement applied for a licence to build a 75-megawatts coal-fired plant in Tanzania that would power a $500m cement factory under construction, according to that country’s Energy and Water Utilities Regulatory Authority.

The cement producer plans to roll out plants across Africa to reach an annual capacity of 62 million tonnes by 2017, up from projected 42 million tonnes this year.

When our correspondent contacted the Chief Operating Officer, Dangote Cement, Mr. Joseph Makoju, on the telephone on Tuesday over the development, he said, “I know that in Tanzania we are going to build a power plant,” but he did not state the fuel that would be used to fire it.

“Sometimes, we hook up to the national grid like in Ethiopia, but in other areas, we build the power plants ourselves,” he added.

Makoju, however, declined to make further comments on the issue.

Reuters quoted EWURA as confirming in a statement, “Dangote Industries applied for a 75MW electricity generation licence to build, own and operate a coal-based captive power plant adjacent to its cement manufacturing plant.

“All the electricity would be used to run the plant and machinery for the manufacture of cement, utilities and housing colony.

“Any interruption in power supply or unstable voltage/frequency causes extensive damage to the refractory and also to the rotary kiln parts. Refractory failures cause production shutdowns varying from 15 to 30 days, and unscheduled use of costly imported refractory bricks.”