The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) and Dangote Group have announced that they will partner to boost job creation in Africa, following a meeting between Aliko Dangote, president of the Dangote Group, and Dr Ahmad Mohamed Ali, IDB president, at the headquarters of the IDB in Jeddah.

Africa’s richest man according to Forbes, the renowned Nigerian businessman has a diversified business empire worth $25bn cement, sugar and value-added products across 16 African countries.

Aliko Dangote told Dr Ahmad Mohamed Ali, president of IDB, that the aim of his visit was to reconnect for the greater good with the institution that he once approached for a loan himself through the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC), one of the financing arms of IDB.

“I am really amazed by the work IDB is doing,” he said. “I believe we need to work together to create jobs. China developed because the Chinese invested. America is successful because the system is tied to job creation, so we must invest in Africa in order to create jobs.”

Dangote also stated that he will now be investing $1.2bn in his foundation, which operates as the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) arm of Dangote Group, to work in various sectors such as education, health and job creation in Africa, and other parts of the world.

He also urged the IDB to work to encourage more entrepreneurship within its member countries by improving its publicity strategy, and Dr Ali noted that efforts would be made to come up with innovative projects and suggested areas where both parties can work together.

Dangote has also recently been in the news over his plans to invest $292.9m in a southern Republic of Congo cement factory with an annual capacity of 1.5 million tonnes in Yamba, and similar efforts by the group are ongoing in Tanzania and Kenya.

The flagship Obajana cement plany in Nigeria meanwhile remains one of the single largest cement plants in the world, with an estimated capacity of 13.25 million tons per annum.