‘AIG To Help Nigeria Maximise Steel Production’

‘AIG To Help Nigeria Maximise Steel Production’

African Industries Group (AIG) has revealed plans to help Nigeria grow the steel sector into a globally dependable sector and achieve backward integration.

The plan, as disclosed by the chairman of the group, Raj Gupta would begin with the group leveraging on its huge investment in steel to make Nigeria the hub and Africa’s number one exporter of steel products.
Gupta who spoke to journalists in Lagos said, “Part of our vision is to grow our investment in the steel sector to a level that we would have placed Nigeria ahead of every other country in Africa.

We want to make Nigeria the giant of Africa, and export steel from Nigeria to the entire Continent.”
He said AIG is a leading Iron and steel manufacturer in Nigeria, with one of the largest production capacities for steel, aluminum and lead products in Nigeria. The group has one of Nigeria’s largest manufacturing capacities of 1.2 million tons per annum of steel products catering mainly to the construction industry.

“With the main aim of making Nigeria self-reliant in steel products and eliminating its dependence on imports, AIG has been a major contributor to the growth of the iron and steel industry in Nigeria for decades,” Gupta said.

He stated that Nigeria has rich Iron Ore deposits and the group has invested about 600 million dollars in Gujeni, which is Nigeria’s largest non-oil FDI, to establish a fully integrated iron ore mining and processing plant, African Natural Resources and Mines Limited (ANRML), the first of its kind.

ANRML has a mining capacity of over five million tons per annum. The Direct Reduced Iron (DRI) produced will be a direct substitute for ferrous scrap currently used as raw material for producing steel in Nigeria. It will also gradually position Nigeria as a prominent Crude Steel producer globally.

“We have a massive State-of-the-art, high-tech manufacturing facilities, with various types of processing equipment and strong technical force to produce good quality steel products like Steel
Billets, Rebars, Debars, Hot Rolled Steel Square Rods, Steel Angles, Steel Flat Bars, Steel Binding Wires, Cold Drawn Steel Wires, Steel Nails, ERW Steel Round Pipes, ERW Steel Rectangular Pipes, Steel Z and C Purlin, Steel Wire Mesh, Steel Chequered Plate and ARC Welding Electrodes. We also operate the largest shredder in Sub Saharan Africa.

“We keep the quality of our products as our top most priority. We are one of the few companies in Nigeria that manufacture best quality Iron Rebars with local and global certifications like MANCAP certification by the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON); UK CARES accreditation; ISO 9001, ISO 14001, ISO 45001 certifications, OHSAS 18001 certifications,” Gupta added.

The group’s chairman further stated that its iron and steel

manufacturing divisions, which rely wholly on locally available

materials in Nigeria, currently produce high strength TMT iron rods and all allied products used mainly in construction that have become a major source of huge foreign exchange savings for Nigeria every year.

“Currently we are exporting steel only to francophone ECOWAS countries but Continental looking at taking advantage of key treaties like the Africa Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA) to launch out to the entire region and subsequently the continent.

“We are not only one of the largest manufacturers of various metal products but also one of the most quality-conscious and sustainable in its processes,” he said.

He added, “We also undertake scrap recycling as per European

standards, to support the environment. Our Aluminum roofing sheets are environmentally friendly, containing a large percentage of recycled matter while the product is also recyclable, making them a rare waste in landfills.”

Speaking further, he said, the group’s businesses are sensitive to

local and international competition, saying, “Our businesses are

basically very sensitive to competition from within and outside

Nigeria, the latter where governments not only subsidise the growth of such sectors, but also give the sector players long term single digit financial support”.

Gupta said AIG has good strength in steel, aluminium, mining and power, especially in power generation. But we also have a presence in many other sectors. We are into lead refining and export thus bringing into Nigeria foreign exchange.

He also disclosed that they are setting up a plant for manufacturing and refining sesame seeds while also building capacity in exporting sesame oil in an attempt to expand AIG’s investment in the agro and allied sector.