President John Dramani Mahama has disclosed that Ghana spends $2 million to import sugar into the country every year.
According to him, Ethiopia and some countries depend on the production of sugar for their development.
President Mahama made this known during the inauguration of a $35 million sugar factory at Komenda in the Komenda-Edina-Eguafo-Abram (KEEA) Municipality of the Central Region on Monday.
The factory is expected to produce 250,000 tons of sugar per year, and it is estimated that the factory, when fully operational, will provide direct and indirect jobs for some 7, 300 people.
President Mahama stated that the new sugar processing facility would help to add value to Ghanaian exports.
He indicated that a $24 million loan facility had been secured from the India Government to support the farmers, adding part of the loan would be used to establish irrigation facility which would cover 2,000 aces to serve as a core farm to feed the factory.
President Mahama stated that part of the facility would also be used to support out growers who are willing to supply raw materials to the factory.
He revealed that all farmers who supply sugarcane would be registered under the Komenda Sugar Farmers Co-operative.
Komenda Sugar FactoryKomenda Sugar Factory
That, he said, would help the factory assist them to increase sugarcane production and give other incentives to encourage farmers to work hard.
He added that such core farmers would be able to supply 40 percent of the raw materials to the factory while the remaining 60 percent would come from the out growers.
“Currently only about 10,000 tons are available meanwhile the factory can crash about 1,250 tons a day so a lot of sugarcane must be produced to feed the factory,” he said.
He revealed that government was preparing to put together a national sugar policy since a lot of investors were trooping into the country to invest in the sugar industry.
The President charged the workers to be disciplined and work hard to ensure the sustainability of the factory
Minister of Trade & Industry, Dr Ekow Spio-Garbarh, commended the India Government for its support.
In attendance were former ministers of state, Members of Parliament (MPs), chiefs, queen-mothers and members of the diplomatic corps.