Spokesperson for Nigerian Customs Service Joseph Attah has confirmed to Qed.ng that BUA Group, like Dangote, also got exemption to export cement.
Mr Attah said in a message on Tuesday that although BUA also got exemption, negotiations are underway to address the partial closure of land borders.
“Yes, they got Presidential approval,” he said, “Meanwhile the diplomatic engagements to address the issues that necessitated the partial land border closure is at an advanced stage. Govt will assess and take appropriate decision at the right time.”
Insiders at Dangote Cement had raised eyebrows over a report by Bloomberg on Monday that the company was granted sole approval to export cement through the land borders.
In reaction to the publication, Dangote Group head of branding and communications Anthony Chiejina said the report was “misleading and mischievous”.
“Dangote Cement is a publicly quoted company and complies strictly with the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) and Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) full disclosure clauses and regularly update transparently our transactions to our shareholders and it is disheartening that such honest disclosure is being interpreted negatively,” he said.
Chief executive officer of Dangote Cement Michel Puchercos told investors on Monday that the company is now exporting cement in a controlled manner following the government’s approval.
The cement manufacturer said it was given partial special dispensation alongside other companies in July 2020 to export their products with certain sequence of crossing at Ilela land border in Sokoto State and Ohumbe land border in Ogun State.
In the third quarter of 2020, the company added it exported 69 kilotonnes of cement via the land borders, compared to previous volumes of 180 kilotonnes before the border closures, which indicates about 38 per cent of the export volumes.
The Buhari administration has kept land borders shut since October 2019 to curb smuggling and boost local production, a move which has raised food prices and distorted businesses.