June 24, 2024

Developers Reject N8,000 Cement Price Agreement: Calls for Further Reduction

 

Real estate developers in Nigeria have expressed dissatisfaction with the agreement reached between the Federal Government and cement manufacturers to reduce the price of cement to a range between N7,000 and N8,000. Dr. Aliyu Wamakko, the President of the Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria, criticized the reduction, stating that it is not conducive for the economy and emphasized that the earlier promised N3,500 price by BUA Cement’s CEO should be upheld.

Wamakko argued that cement is a primary product for construction, and any price above N5,000 is not beneficial for the economy and won’t contribute positively to addressing the country’s 28 million housing deficit. He called for a review of abandoned buildings across the country, emphasizing the need for a more affordable price to complete building projects.

Other industry stakeholders, including Toye Eniola, the Executive Secretary of the Association of Housing Corporation in Nigeria, condemned the negotiation, stating that the proposed price range is not favorable for the poor. Eniola urged a return to local building materials, citing alternative materials like interlocking blocks and bamboo, which can be more cost-effective.

Sola Enitan, CEO of Cromwell Professional Services International Limited, expressed disappointment in the reduction, asserting that it is insufficient and may lead to increased rent and housing challenges. He highlighted the need for government intervention in housing projects without relying heavily on cement.

Jide Odusolu, CEO of Octo5 Holdings, questioned the earlier promises made by BUA Cement, stating that the company did not fulfill its commitment to selling cement at N3,500 per bag. He called for a reassessment of gas costs and suggested a move from reliance on bagged cement to producing concrete.

Despite the agreement by cement manufacturers to sell a 50kg bag of cement within the N7,000 to N8,000 range, developers are urging further reductions and a comprehensive approach to address challenges in the industry, including gas shortages, import duties, smuggling, and road network issues.

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