Ghanaian Govt. investigates allegations against Dangote Cement

Posted by News Express | 3 February 2016 | 6,275 times

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The Ghanaian Ministry of Trade and Industry has announced that it is set to commence investigations into allegations raised by some Ghanaian cement manufacturing companies over Dangote Cement’s operations in the country.

Diamond Cement has been complaining for months of undue competition from Nigeria’s Dangote Cement.

The development is said to have reduced Diamond Cement’s annual production capacity of 1.8 million bags to 1.3 million bags.

The Deputy Communications Manager at the trade ministry, Ahmad Nasir, said the ministry would comply with the recommendations of the Tariff Advisory Board of the ministry mandated to conduct the investigations.

“Diamond cement’s point was that looking at the price of input into the manufacturing of cement, there was no way Dangote could produce in Nigeria, bring goods into Ghana, pay tariffs and still sell at a price lower than theirs. They are suspecting that something fishy was going on,” Ahmad Nasir stated.

“At this stage it is an allegation until it is investigated, no action can be taken, within two weeks or so, this issue should be dealt with,” he added.

News Express reports that there have also been street protests against Dangote Cement in parts of Ghana.

On Thursday, November 26, 2015 some rate youth of Aflao held a street protest against the importation of bagged Dangote Cement from Nigeria.

A report by Ghana’s leading newspaper, The graphic, said that the protesters complained that the importation of the already bagged cement from Nigeria by Dangote was collapsing local cement industries, including Diamond Cement. The protesters called on President John Dramani Mahama to intervene to address the situation.

The report said that the protesters went on a peaceful march from the streets of Denu to the Aflao Customs Park, holding placards with inscriptions such as: ‘Stop the importation of cheap cement’, ‘Mr Minister, please stop this unfair trade practice’, ‘Save Diamond Cement and Ghacem from unfair competition’, ‘Dangote, come and establish a factory in Ghana’, ‘Stop the dumping now’, ‘Ghana Youth need jobs’ and ‘Mr President, Diamond Cement is the only factory left in your World Bank’.

“In a five-page petition to the President and copied to the Volta Regional Minister, the Member of Parliament for the area and the Municipal Chief Executive, the youth lamented that the importation of Dangote Cement was a dangerous economic sabotage which needed to be addressed,” the report said.

It quoted the Spokesperson for the group, Mr Mengistu Agorbia, as saying that the influx of Dangote Cement had resulted in low patronage of Diamond Cement, causing the company to lose about 40 per cent of its income, while Dangote had reported huge profits, citing the importation of its cement to Ghana as the main driving force.

“He said if the trend continued, the youth from the area who worked with Diamond Cement would be laid off, while Dangote continued to create employment for Nigerians,” the report said.

•With additional report from ThisDay. Photo shows Ghanaian youths protesting against Dangote Cement.

Source: News Express

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