UPDATE 1-Nigeria's Flour Mills to borrow to double cement capacity - CFO

Fri Feb 8, 2013 11:35am EST

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LAGOS Feb 8 (Reuters) - Flour Mills of Nigeria plans to borrow between $400 million to $500 million to construct a new cement plant which will double its existing 2.5 million metric tonnes capacity, its chief finance officer said on Friday.

Jacques Vauthier told Reuters the conglomerate had appointed financial advisers and banks to raise a term loan from the local market for the construction of the plant. He said the details of the loan were still being finalised.

The new cement plant will be completed by the first quarter of 2016, Vauthier said.

Nigeria's biggest cement firm Dangote Cement and Flour Mill's rival recently re-opened its Gboko cement plant after it was shut two month ago due to over-supply in the market, bringing back a fifth of its 20 million tones capacity.

Vauthier acknowledged last year's glut caused by cheap imports from Asia but said sales were picking up again and he expected its cement subsidiary Unicem to end the year with growth in double-digits over the previous year.

Nigeria has a huge infrastructure need, which will fuel a construction boom and cement companies are gearing up by scaling up capacity. (Reporting by Chijioke Ohuocha; Editing by Joe Brock)

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