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OCP Group plans chemical plants, fertilizer blenders in Africa

Published by , Editorial Assistant
World Fertilizer,

Reuters is reporting that Morocco’s OCP Group expects to reach a deal this year to build a Nigerian ammonia plant and to start production of a US$3.7 billion chemical plant in Ethiopia by 2023 – 2024.

The world’s largest phosphate exporter is also considering a factory in Ghana in 2020 as it pursues plans to bring customised fertilizers closer to African markets, according to Karim Lotfi Senhaji. CEO of OCP Africa.

OCP has been expanding investments in sub-Saharan Africa in recent years, along with other Moroccan firms such as banks and insurers, which has boosted the region’s economic influence.

According to Senhaji, the Nigerian plant would have a total capacity of 1 million t of ammonia and cost US$1.5 billion.

OCP signed a deal in June to build the industrial platform with Nigeria’s sovereign investment authority during a visit to Rabat by Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari.

The Moroccan firm expects its chemical plant in Ethiopia to be operational by 2023 or 2024, with an initial capacity of 2.5 million t of fertilizers. These investments are part of a strategy to boost phosphate-based fertilizer use and production in Africa.

“We encourage having this customisation done as close as possible to the farmers or the area of consumption. We don’t aim to produce everything in Morocco,” said Senhaji.

The group plans a blending facility in Rwanda, three in Nigeria, one in Ivory Coast, five in Ethiopia and one in Ghana, with each costing between US$8 million and US$12 million.

“These will be launched in 2019 and we expect to have them ready in 2020,” he said.

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