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1D1F not only about greenfield projects – Alan Kyerematen

Minister of Trade and Industry

Minister of Trade and Industry, Alan Kyerematen, has rebutted claims that Government is only rebranding some existing projects as “One District, One Factory ” (1D1F) companies.

Critics of Government’s flagship programme have always been quick to raise issues anytime names of projects under the programme are put out, asserting that some of the companies are not new.

Mr Kyerematen, at a media encounter in the Ashanti region, restated that the programme was not only about the birthing of greenfield projects, but also the resuscitation of existing but distressed companies.

He said supports were also being given to vibrant companies to either expand or introduce new production lines.

“If we say we are embarking on an industrial transformation agenda, if we say we want to stimulate industrial growth, what sense will it make if we allow struggling existing companies to collapse and say that we are supporting only greenfield projects? Why don’t we extend similar support to these struggling companies for them to get back on their feet so that we are able to sustain the livelihoods of the Ghanaians who have been employed there as well as increase their capacity to recruit even more?” The Minister asked.

The Trade Minister’s media engagement was on the back of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s tour of Darko Farms as part of the President’s visit to the Ashanti region.

Mr Kyerematen said Darko Farms was a testament of the wisdom of the President in extending the incentives of the programme to distressed but potentially viable projects.

Darko Farms and Company Limited is the oldest private and largest poultry farm established in 1967 with most of its operations located in Akropong in the Atwima Nwabiagya District of the Ashanti Region.

It was a household name for most Ghanaians for the production and sale of fresh wholesome and quality chicken and dominated most supermarkets and distribution outlets for fresh chicken in Kumasi and Accra.

The Company, however, went through a period of decline due to major challenges confronting the domestic poultry industry, including the high cost of feed, high cost of borrowing, inefficiencies across the value chain, high electricity and operational cost, management and governance issues as well as cheap imports.

As part of Government’s industrialisation programme, the Company was identified as viable but distressed and considered under the 1D1F programme in 2017.

It received the support of GHc 22.1 Million (out of the 39 million cedis which was initially requested) loan facility granted by Ghana EXIM Bank as a stimulus package to revamp operations.

The money is expected to help improve the value chain of the operations, upgrade, retool the hatchery, feed mill, processing facility, pay outstanding workers’ salaries and statutory obligations.

The 1D1F support includes helping establish out-grower schemes and the provision of technical assistance at no cost to the Company.

Darko Farms has a processing plant operating at 10,000 birds per day with one shift and 20,000 birds per day with two shifts and has re-tooled all its commercial farms to bring them up to international standards and increased day-old chicks and feed mill production to supply out-growers.

It has a hatchery with a capacity to produce 6 million day-old chicks a year, breeder farms with a bird population capacity of about 30,000 per batch, layer farms with a capacity of 100,000 per batch.

It also has commercial broiler farms with a capacity of 350,000 per cycle of 8 weeks, a feed mill with an installed capacity of 96 tons of feed per day, a storage cold room of 500 tons and a corn farmland of 1,250 acres at Ejura.

Darko Farms is currently implementing an out-grower scheme where farmers are supplied with broiler chicks, feed as well as appropriate support to breed the birds, which are purchased at maturity by the Farms for processing on a contractual basis.

Currently, the Company has employed 250 workers directly and more than 300 indirectly consisting of out-growers, distributors and transporters.

At full operation, it is expected to directly employ more than 400 workers for its operations, with 500 indirect employment through out-growers scheme, transporters, packaging and handling, and sales outlets.

The Company is engaged with the Mohihani Group, the major local supplier of processed chicken for Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) and other big players in the food industry.

KFC, through its local supplier, has indicated its preparedness to off-take 100,000 birds monthly from Darko Farms under certified conditions.

The Company also has sales outlets in Accra and Kumasi and intends to open more sales outlets in all regional capitals.
Source:GNA

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Business

We won’t approve 2022 budget if… – Minority

Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta

The Minority in Parliament have threatened not to approve the budget statement for the 2022 fiscal year if the Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta fails to show how the 2021 budget was spent.

Member of Parliament for Asawase, Muntaka Mubarak, said it was necessary for the government to tell the people of this country how the previous budget was utilized.

The Finance Minister Mr Ofori Atta is scheduled to present the budget statement in Parliament on Wednesday November 17.

Deputy Majority Leader, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, had said Parliament would start the debate on the budget from Monday, November 22, and conclude on Friday, November 26, 2021.

Speaking in an interview with TV3, Muntaka Mubarak said “ This budget, we have sent signal that if you don’t bring the details on how you spent the 2021 budget you are going to have it very difficult with us getting approval for 2022.

We will insist on the details, show us the details so you don’t come and tell us.”

Source:3 News

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Business

Fuel consumers express frustration over price hikes

Fuel consumers have appealed to the government to take urgent steps in addressing the increasing price of the product.

Last night, some Oil Marketing Companies upwardly adjusted the cost of fuel to GHC 6.90 per litre.

These OMCs explain that the hike is a result of the rising crude prices on the international market.

Thursday evening’s rise in fuel prices is the second in three weeks.

These developments have left consumers frustrated.

“At first, I was buying GHC 60.00 which could last me for a whole day. But now, I’m buying GHC 150.00 worth of fuel per day. I am going to stop this taxi work and seek employment elsewhere,” one consumer told JoyNews.

Another transport operator told JoyNews that the rapid rise in fuel prices is crippling his business.

“The rising cost of fuel has affected me heavily. I run a fleet of vehicles and with the prices going up, we cannot emphasize enough, the need for the government to come in. Currently, all the vehicles are parked.”

Since September last year, the cost of fuel has experienced an over 40% increment.

This has raised general concerns among a large section of the public as any adjustment in the cost of fuel has a rippling effect on the cost of other goods and services.

There have been calls already on the government to rationalize levies on petroleum products.

Speaking on Joy FM, Chief Executive Officer of the Chamber of Bulk Oil Distributors, Senyo Hosi, said that the rationalization of petroleum levies will stabilize the cost of fuel in the country.

“The Energy Sector Recovery Levy, Energy Debt Recovery Levy, Primary Distribution Levy, the Primary Distribution Margin, the Sanitation levy, all need to be rationalized. For instance, the Price Stabilization and Recovery Levy, for instance, has not been used for any stabilization programme ever,” he said.

Source:Myjoyonline

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Integration of Ghana Card and TIN has increased our tax base from 4% to 86% – Dr. Boako

Dr. Gideon Boako

The Spokesperson for Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia says the country’s tax base has broadened following the integration of the National Identification Card and the Tax Identification Number (TIN).

According to Dr. Gideon Boako, this integration automatically raised the number of Ghanaians with Tax Identification Numbers from 4% to 86%.

Speaking at a press conference on Friday, he stated that “this has made it possible for many Ghanaians to be identified as potential taxpayers”; adding that this increase in taxpayers ensures a raise in domestically mobilized revenues.

Dr. Boako added that “countries borrow because their domestically mobilized revenues are inadequate to finance critical expenditures. What governments have done in the past is to increase the tax burden of the few who are willing and pay taxes thereby collapsing business and causing unemployment.”

However, he believes that the steps taken to digitise the economy will see to it that taxpayers are not overburdened.

“We also see how doing this could potentially cut down on our debt levels and consequently help us to attain a relatively stable currency and reduce the rate of inflation,” he added.

His comments follow Dr. Bawumia’s public lecture on the government’s digitization drive at the Ashesi University on Tuesday, November 2.

Among other things, the Vice President highlighted government’s achievements in digitisation and listed other digitisation projects the government is expected to embark on.

These projects include the introduction of an E-Pharmacy before the end of 2021, the launch of E-cedi and E-passport, and Zipline supplying medicines to people at home.

Meanwhile, Dr. Boako says the government’s aggressive digitization agenda serve as a tool for achieving better governance.

The use of ICT in digitisation, he explained, allows public institutions to enhance their ways and means of linking with the general public so as to reduce costs, improve performance, increase ease of access and speed of delivery and effectiveness.

“Embracing digital technologies means providing strategic drivers to create open participatory and trustworthy public sectors, to improve social inclusiveness and government accountability, and to bring together government and non-government actors to develop innovative approaches to national development and long-term sustainable growth,” Dr Boako added.

Source: Myjoyonline.com

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