• Angolan Billionaire to build new Cement Plant

    19 Oct 2013
    Cement Plant

    Africa’s richest man, Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote, plans to spend US$ 350m to build a new cement plant in Niger as part of a continent-wide drive to boost output, he said following a meeting with the country’s president. Dangote Cement, Africa’s largest cement producer, is targeting production of 55 million tonnes by 2016 and said last year it was investing $5bn to build cement plants on the African continent. Dangote met with President Issoufou Mahamadou in the capital Niamey. “I announced to the head of state my intention to build a cement plant worth $350m which will produce 1.5 million tonnes (annually),” Dangote told journalists following the meeting. “The realisation of this project will create 6 000 to 7 000 jobs,” he added…

  • Russian Contract for Hydroplant Cancelled

    20 Jul 2013
    Hydro Power Plant

    Niger has cited delays to revoke a huge contract with a Russian company tasked with building the impoverished nation’s flagship hydroelectricity project. “The government has quite simply decided to terminate the contract between the state of Niger and Zarubezhvodstroy for the construction of the dam,” Prime Minister Brigi Rafini said on public television Thursday. Rafini argued that only 5.6% of the work had been completed two years into the project, whose total cost is estimated at close to $800m. The Kandadji hydroelectricity on the Niger River was meant to be completed by 2016 and have a capacity of 132 megawatts. "We have to acknowledge that despite our warnings to the firm, its weak technical and financial capacities are a major imp…

  • Power Outages cripple Economy

    20 Jun 2013

    Niger’s worst power cuts in years have crippled businesses and government offices in the capital Niamey for more than three weeks, raising fears they could harm the fragile economy of one of the world’s poorest nations. Niamey and Niger’s southwestern provinces of Dosso and Tillaberi have been largely without electricity since May 25 when a storm knocked out power lines to the Kainji hydroelectric dam in western Nigeria. The three regions are home to more than a third of Niger’s 17 million inhabitants, and the bulk of the output from the landlocked country’s $11bn economy, which grew 11% last year thanks to good harvests and the start of oil output. Small businesses, which employ most of the population, have been the hardest hit as they …

  • Food Shortages again in the Sahel Region?

    25 Apr 2013 | Celeste Hicks
    Sahel Region

    Aid agencies, amongst them the World Food Organisation (WFO) are gearing up for a second year of emergency response in the Sahel Region, where an estimated 10.3 million people could be affected by food shortages, according to the UN (pdf). Despite rains in 2012 leading to a good harvest in October-November, deficits incurred during last year’s food crisis means the poorest families have not been able to replenish their stocks and pay off debts. The situation this year is exacerbated by a lower than expected harvest in Nigeria (pdf), which produces a lot of the grain consumed in the Sahel – prices have shot up. The crisis in Mali has prevented thousands of families there from planting at all. "We can say there is a crisis already, just by…

  • Local Enterprises and Skills Devlopment kicks off

    12 Apr 2013
    LESDEP Logo

    Local Enterprises and Skills Development Programme (LESDEP) has signed an MOU to soon begin its operations in Niger. The programme which will be undertaken in collaboration with the Ministry of Training and Employment of Niger, seeks to provide training and skills development to the West African Nation’s teeming youth to help reduce unemployment, develop the human resource capacity of the youth and women in Niger. Under the terms of agreement, LESDEP will help in the deployment of trainers in Niger, provide one hundred (100) repair kits and mobile phones, hundred (100) sewing machines as well as provide educational materials and equipment for the phase one of the programme after which the second phase will begin.

    Speaking at the cerem…