Lafarge Chairman Chairman Muna Hantuba with Chilanga MP  Keith Mukata laying a foundation stone for the Big Chilanga project
Lafarge Chairman Chairman Muna Hantuba with Chilanga MP Keith Mukata laying a foundation stone for the Big Chilanga project

Lafarge Chilanga Plc Board Chairman Muna Hantuba says his firm does not fear competition in the cement market brought in by Dangote Cement.

This week, Dangote Cement started production at its US$400 million cement plant in Ndola that will produce 1.4 million tons of cement annually.

But Mr Hantuba said Lafarge welcomes competition on the Zambian cement market as it will translate into improved service delivery.

‘We welcome the competition that is coming on the market. It just does the complimentary duty of making business easier for the stakeholders in this country,’ Mr Hantuba.

He added, ‘Perhaps i could be one of the first ones to congratulate Dangote for coming in with a plant and i understand that a truck load of their cement would have wheeled out of their plant recently. We welcome them to help us improve on the delivery of service and quality as we build better cities.’

Mr Hantuba was speaking in Chilanga this morning during the laying of a foundation stone for the construction of a new cement plant to be called Big Chilanga which will take the company’s annual production to 2.5 million tons.
‘On this very spot not very long ago we did the foundation stone for the plant which improved the delivery of cement to this country. We stand here today to put another plant which should come online by 2018,’ he said.

Mr Hantuba added, ‘When we put in cement to build the Kariba Dam, we knew that 50 years later we would still be producing cement, we would have improved our quality of cement and we would have done it in a safe environment. Lafarge does not condemn or fear rivalry or competition.’

And Lafarge Chilanga Chief Executive Officer Emmanuel Rigaux said the move to lay a foundation stone marks a huge step in the growth of Lafarge in Zambia.

He said Big Chilanga will be the largest cement plant not only in Zambia but in the region.

Mr Rigaux said the plant will take the company’s production from the current 1 million to 2.5 million per annum by constructing new line whose construction will start in the next few weeks upon regulatory approvals and will be completed with 18 months.

And speaking on behalf of President Edgar Lungu, Commerce Minister Margaret Mwanakatwe said the expansion of the plant will translate into increased jobs and industrial activities not only for Chilanga district but across the several sectors of the economy.

‘We welcome Lafarge’s expansion. The construction sector is the barometer of the country’s economy. I also know that Lafarge is adding 100,000 tons of cement per annum to its Ndola plant. This is another sign of confidence in the Zambian economy and the policies of my government.’

Commerce Minister Margaret Mwanakatwe flanked by Lands  Minister Christabel Njimbu listens attentively during the laying of the  foundation stone ceremony
Commerce Minister Margaret Mwanakatwe flanked by Lands Minister Christabel Njimbu listens attentively during the laying of the foundation stone ceremony
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10 COMMENTS

  1. Very encouraging development. This is what we should all be striving for. Ways to improve and make a better Zambia. Manufacturing, Agriculture and Tourism these will be key to reviving our sad economy. ECONOMY YAVUTA. THIS ONE ISSUE THE ECONOMY WILL BRING THE PF DOWN. ECONOMY YAVUTA KEKEKEKE! !!

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  2. It’s will be great to know the market price of a 50kg bag of Dangote Cement. Since production has commenced at their Ndola plant, one would have hoped that journalists would take keen interest in such a big story and give us news. Or is it the marketing department of Dangote which is not doing its job?

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  3. Dangote as already started construction of the 2nd plant in lusaka these guys mean business….Lafarge has been relaxing too long as zambia portland cement is currently is disarray , but dangote also see zambia as a base to export cement into DRC as zambia is a more friendly business environment

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  4. Way to go Lafarge! And while they are expanding capacity and defending their market share some of their competitors are busy hounding out equity partners.What a pity to their brand

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  5. WITH LAFARGE, DANGOTE AND PORTLAND CEMENT COMPANIES, ZAMBIA’S CEMENT MUST NOW BE THE CHEAPEST IN THE REGION. OTHERWISE MA JOKES.

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  6. When you are in Nigeria like it or not every single morning when you wake up and by the time you go to sleep at night you will have consumed a product of Dangote and this is in a country with a population of over 170 million people so you can imagine this mans business reach and business tactics to make sure his product is number one and first to be consumed. Lafarge will never compete with this man they just don’t have that level of business acumen.

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    • Haha. In 2014 Lafarge (which is a global company by the way, with a presence in more than 50 countries) was founded in 1883 and had about 13 bn Euros in revenue – that’s more than the Dangote Group had. Besides, I’d say more than 100 years of business is proof of a decent level of business acumen – at least in the parent company if not in the Zambian unit.

      Take it easy. Even without your exaggerations, Dangote is a big deal. No need to stump on the competition on his behalf.

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  7. That’s the spirit! We need competition so we can pursue fresh markets and thereby create employment. Let’s go cement boys let’s go!

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