President John Dramani Mahama has commissioned the Komenda sugar factory in the Central Region.
The factory, whch was established decades ago by the late President Kwame Nkrumah, had to be closed down due to technical and operational challenges.
But two years ago, the government secured a $35 million Indian Exim Bank facility to revive it. Work on the factory has been completed and is expected to produce not just sugar, but also by-products such as energy and alcohol to support industry.
Commissioning the refurbished factory, in a colourful ceremony attended by the chiefs and people of Komenda, President Mahama said it would create 7000 jobs.
“The revival of the Komenda Sugar plant was one of our major plans in the transforming lives agenda. It will provide direct and indirect jobs to an estimated 7000 people… It was providing jobs to 1000 people directly when it was established,” he said.
He said it positive step towards Ghana's quest for self-dependence.
“Every single cube of sugar that we eat here in Ghana is imported...Komenda is going to change that,” he said.
The president put the capacity of the plant at 1,250 tonnes per day, which he said made it 25% bigger than the original plant.
The factory is expected to produce other by-products such as Molasses or black treacle - a viscous by-product in the refining of sugarcane or sugar beets into sugar – which is used in alcohol production as well as ethanol for fuel, according to a report by starrfmonline.com.
President Mahama said some of the by-products would be used to generate about 3MW of power.