Dangote Names Forces That Almost Ruined His Refinery As He Repays 43% of Borrowed Loan

Dangote Names Forces That Almost Ruined His Refinery As He Repays 43% of Borrowed Loan

  • Aliko Dangote, the president of the Dangote Group, said a significant portion of the money borrowed to build the refinery has been repaid
  • The funding for the construction of the Dangote Refinery was secured from banks in Nigeria and also Afrixembank
  • Dangote also shared the challenges faced in actualising the refinery and named persons who fought to stop it

Legit.ng journalist Dave Ibemere has over a decade of business journalism experience with in-depth knowledge of the Nigerian economy, stocks, and general market trends.

Aliko Dangote, the founder of Dangote Group, revealed that he has paid off $2.4 billion of the $5.5 billion loan used to build the $19 billion Lagos-based refinery.

He disclosed this while speaking at the Afreximbank annual meetings in Nassau, The Bahamas, on Wednesday, June 12.

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Dangote refinery repays loan, shares challenges
Dangote refinery is one of the biggest in the world Photo credit: Bloomberg/Contributor
Source: Getty Images

Africa's richest man named Afreximbank and Access Bank as a big part of the refinery funding.

He stated that the vision would have failed without their backing, Punch reports.

His words:

“We borrowed the money based on our own balance sheet. I think we borrowed just over $5.5 billion. But we paid also a lot of interest as we went along, because the project was delayed because of lack of land, also the sand-filling took a long time. Almost five years or so we didn’t do anything.
“We actually started in 2018. We borrowed that much. We have actually, of course, paid interest and some principal, about $2.4 billion.
"We’ve done very well. We now have only about $2.7 billion left to be paid. So we’ve done very well for a project of that magnitude."

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Speaking further, Dangote remarked that foreign banks showed little interest in supporting the project.

Dangote names those who opposed refinery project

The billionaire also revealed that a group of oil mafia fought to ruin the vision of the refinery, stating that the pushback was far more intense than he had expected.

He stated that local and international interests, which he likened to a "mafia", repeatedly attempted to thwart the refinery's completion.

Dangote added:

“Well, I knew that there would be a fight. But I didn’t know that the mafia in oil, they are stronger than the mafia in drugs. I can tell you that. Yes, it’s a fact. They tried all sorts to stop me.
“But I’m a person that has been fighting all my life. You know, so I think it’s part of my life to fight.
“As a matter of fact during the COVID period, some of the international banks really were looking forward to making sure that they push us into default of our loans so that the project will just be dead. And that didn’t happen with the help of banks like Afreximbank.”

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Dangote speaks on refinery benefits

Legit.ng earlier reported that Dangote spoke on the positive impact of his new oil refinery on Nigeria's economy.

The refinery, located in Lagos, is one of the largest in the world and is expected to be launched by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Some of the benefits expected from the refinery include export savings in manufacturing plastics and textiles.

Proofreading by James Ojo Adakole, journalist and copy editor at Legit.ng.

Source: Legit.ng

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Dave Ibemere (Senior Business Editor) Dave Ibemere is a senior business editor at Legit.ng. He is a financial journalist with over a decade of experience in print and online media. He also holds a Master's degree from the University of Lagos. He is a member of the African Academy for Open-Source Investigation (AAOSI), the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations and other media think tank groups. He previously worked with The Guardian, BusinessDay, and headed the business desk at Ripples Nigeria. Email: dave.ibemere@corp.legit.ng.