BUA Cement Plc has announced plans to commission additional production lines with focus on raising the firm’s current cement capacity of 11 million metric tons per annum in 2021, to 20 million metric tons per annum by 2022.
BUA board believes the addition of new lines is a strategy to taming insatiable and sustained demand for cement, which leads to exorbitant prices to the detriment of builders and potential home owners.
Chairman, board of directors of BUA Cement plc, Alhaji Abdul-Samad Rabiu, disclosed the plan to the shareholders of the firm yesterday in Abuja at the 5th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the cement firm.
Rabiu informed BUA shareholders that efforts were on for the commissioning of kalambaina line-3, which according to him, will add 3mmt per annum to the existing 8mmtpa in 2021. This was, as the firm announced a leap in revenues by 19.3 per cent to N209.4 billion in 2020 compared to N175 billion in 2019.
Presenting statement of accounts to the company’s shareholders, Rabiu said the company experienced growth in all performance indexes notwithstanding Covid- 19 pandemic challenges.
While revenue grew by 19.3 percent in the year under review, he said volume rose to 5.1 million metric tons, earning before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) increased by 18.0 per cent to N96.8 billion from N81.9 billon in 2019.
“With EBITDA margin being resilient at 46.2 per cent, we also recorded 19.4 per cent growth in Profit After Tax (PAT) to N72.3 billion and 19.6 per cent rise in Earnings Per Share (ESP) to N2.14 from N1,79 as at 2019”.
“In view of our sustained performance, the board has recommended for your approval a dividend of N2.067 per ordinary share”, he informed shareholders.
Speaking in an interview with journalists, BUA chairman advocated for more players in the cement industry, noting that the quantity of cement produced by BUA, Dangote and Lafaj could not meet the demand considering the high population of the country of about 220 million people.
He explained that currently, the three cement companies in the country produce about 30 million metric tones per annum hence the need to have more players in order to bring down prices.
Rabiu said though more players would mean more competition for him but it was in the best interest of the country.
He however urged the federal government to do everything possible to bring more investors into the sector with a view to meeting the cement demand of Nigerians.
“The high price of cement is of great concern to me, the price is actually high. We are 210 or 220 million people, 30 million tones of cement per annum is actually low for us.
“No one can really control the price because it depends on demand and supply. We are trying hard to ensure the price is not as high as it is now.
“Nigeria is growing with a huge economy. We need more plants on stream to cater for the rising demand of cement in the country.
“Egypt produces 85 mm tones of cement per annum and the demand of cement in that country is just 50 million metric tones per annum and that is why the country sells one of the cheapest price of cement on the continent” he said.