Inspite of the uncertainties in the global economy and other vagaries not favourable to business, the National Salt Company of Nigeria posted a turnover of N9.8bn in the 2008 financial year.
The company achieved a profit after tax of N1 298bn in the financial year, while profit before tax was N1.89bn, a per centage growth of 26 per cent.
Chairman of NASCON, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, however, said the result was below expectation for the year.
According to him, ”The economy performed below expectation in 2008. The world economy crises witnessed towards the end of the year and increased crisis in the Niger Delta region saw to the continued decline in crude oil exploration and production by the country.”
Represented by one of the directors of the company, Mr. Olakunle Alake, he added that ”this meant that national finances deteriorated in the year. In addition, the poor state of the country‘s infrastructure and the devaluation of the naira in the last quarter of 2008, further worsened the economic environment. This devaluation led to higher cost of production, which impacted negatively on businesses in general within the country.”
Dangote, who also revealed that NASCON’s financial target was affected because it imports its major raw material from Brazil, said, ”The challenges of the business of the year under review notwithstanding, our company posted a turnover of N7.8bn reflecting a percentage growth of 26per cent over the previous year.
He said, ”Operating profit before tax achieved was N1.89bn, while our after tax profit was N1.298bn, showing a modest growth over the past year.” He emphasised that the performance reflected the impact of the operating environment and the company‘s response by way of measures and policies put in place to ensure that it remained profitable.
Speaking on the 2009 prospect, the chairman told the shareholders that NASCON is committed to maintain its leadership in the salt industry, and as a result, it has installed two additional sachet salt production lines with a rate capacity of 180, 000 tonnes per annum.