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Nigeria has relied heavily on imported fertilizers to meet 80% of its national demand. This situation is set to change with the Indorama Fertilizer Plant, which will transform Nigeria from a net importer of fertilizer to a major producer and exporter.
Located east of Port Harcourt, Rivers State, the plant will transform 1.4 metric tons per annum of natural gas into urea fertilizer annually that will be sold on the local market and also exported to neighboring countries such as Benin and Ghana, and to South Africa, the USA, Brazil, the UK and India.
Of the total project cost of US $1.2 billion, the African Development Bank extended an 11.5-year senior loan of US $100 million and assisted with sourcing a US $800-million debt facility from development financial institutions and commercial lenders.
The project generated over 9,000 jobs (500 for women) during the construction phase, 251 permanent jobs, and 169 long-term contracts upon project completion.
Employees benefited from skills development programs: 30 engineers went for a 3-month training in India, over 100 workers were trained locally, and 89 sponsored entrepreneurship trainees now serve as feeders to the company and other establishments. Merit Scholarships were awarded to 252 students in tertiary institutions.
The local context was boosted by establishing various small-scale businesses supporting the company’s supply chain and providing ancillary services.
The project also led to infrastructure development: An 84 kilometre-long pipeline, a multipurpose jetty and a terminal infrastructure at Onne Port, located 16km from the project site, were all built.