Abakaliki – The Federal Government says it is committed to support the revitalisation of the Nigerian Cement Company (NIGERCEM) in Nkalagu, Ebonyi.
Dr Kayode Fayemi, Minister of Mines and Steel Development, disclosed this during a visit to the company at Ishielu Local Government Area, Ebonyi.
Fayemi said that the company, which had been moribund over the years, had given the ministry so much concern on areas it could be of assistance to revive it and come on board as it was in the 1950s.
He said that the ministry would assist the company with import duty waiver of mining equipment and Forex, among others, when it commences operations.
“It is a thing of joy to the ministry to assist in the revitalisation of the company because the ministry is under pressure to make this company come on board again, that is why we are here.
” This is one of the things we have identified in our road map that local processing of minerals and beneficiation is the solution to our industrialisation agenda,” he said.
He said that NIGERCEM, that was acquired by Ibeto Group in 2015, had promised to produce 2.2 million tonnes of cement annually when it commenced operation, adding that this would create massive job for the youth.
He urged the company to meet up with its deadline to commence operation within its 24 months deadline set to for the purpose.
Gov. David Umahi of the state, who was on the entourage, commended the minister for his effort to assist in revitalising the company, adding that the state would also assist it .
IBETO Group of companies had signed MoU with the state government in 2015 to revitalise the NIGERCEM which had been moribund since 2003.
The two ministers of the sector are currently on a nationwide tour to mining sites, to build stakeholders’ confidence, get feedback from them, identify challenges and proffer solutions