President Mahama cuts sod for sugar factory construction

John Dramani Mahama

John Dramani Mahama

Accra, Komenda (C/R), Aug. 19,GNA – President John Dramani Mahama on Tuesday announced that government would avoid all the negative tendencies and attitudes that led to the collapse of Komenda sugar factory some years back.

He said the importation of sugar and other essential consumer goods were having a heavy toll on the Ghanaian economy, which government would work out to balance in the coming years.

President Mahama said this when he cut the sod for commencement of work on the $ 36.5 million Komenda Sugar Factory in the Komenda Edina Eguafo Abirem Municipality in the Central Region.

The Export and Import (EXIM) Bank of India is providing $ 35 million, while the Government of Ghana is providing the counterpart funding of $ 1.5 million towards the establishment  of the  project.

The sugar factory, on completion, would provide 1,300 direct jobs to Ghanaians and over 5000 auxiliary jobs would also be provided under the project.

Ghana Government and the M/S Seftech India Private Limited would construct a 1,250 tonnes of cane per day of the white sugar plant to produce ethanol and 1.0 megawatts surplus power.

President Mahama said in order to ensure sustainable raw material production base for the project, an additional credit of $ 24.5 million had been secured for the development of a sugar cane plantation with an irrigation facility.

The funds, the President said,was targeting the 3,000 hectares of irrigable land while the Government of Ghana would also provide five percent of the amount to facilitate the irrigation of the plantation.

He said all those were geared towards the reduction of importation of sugar and other essential commodities and to support the Ghanaian industries.

President Mahama said while government would continue to partner other private sectors in the production  of the  commodity, attitudes that led to the collapse of the former project would be used as a guide to succeed.

He appealed to the supervisors to play a responsible role to ensure that it survived to serve many more generations to come.

President Mahama commended the chiefs of the Komenda Traditional Area for releasing land for the project and gave the assurance that the factory would pay dividends annually to the people.

Mr Haruna Iddrisu, outgoing Minister for Trade and Industry, said apart from the Indian Company, Japan and Mauritius had also expressed interest in establishing similar factories in the country.

He gave the assurance that government would work around the clock to protect the factory from negative activities of foreign cartels and called on all agencies to be on their guard against those practices.

Mr Iddrisu commended the Indian Government for releasing funds towards for the project and pledged the support of the Ministry of Trade and Industry to work hard to achieve President Mahama’s economic transformation programme.

Mr Ajanish Quonir, Acting Indian High Commissioner to Ghana, said the project would further deepen thecordial relationship India had with Ghana over the years.

He said India had experience in sugar production, considering the fact that it had over 500 sugar factories and would share that experience with her Ghanaian counterparts.

The project is expected to be completed within 24 months.


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