Trade and Industry Minister, Mr. Allan Kyerematen, has dismissed claims that the government has only been re-branding existing companies and presenting them as new ones built under its flagship one district one factory program.
He said the program was not only about building factories from the scratch to completion but also the resuscitation of existing ones that are in distress.
It made a lot of sense to extend support the struggling ones that could become vibrant - expand and have new production lines.
Embarking on an industrial transformation agenda and stimulating industrial growth would not make any meaning is struggling companies requiring bailout are not assisted but allowed to collapse just because “ we say we are only supporting greenfield projects “.
He explained that helping distressed businesses to find their feet was the right thing to do as this would help to sustain the livelihood of their employees but also build the capacity to hire more people.
He was speaking to journalists in Kumasi when he accompanied President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on his Regional tour of the Ashanti Region.
Darko Farms and Company Limited, a private poultry farm, is one of the troubled companies that has been given a new lease of life under the one district one factory program.
Established in 1967, it produced for sale quality fresh chicken but fell into rough times because of the high cost of feed, electricity, borrowing, operational cost and cheap imports.
It was identified for support under the program and reviewed Ghs22.1 million loan from the Ghana EXIM Bank to revamp its operations.
The money is being used to upgrade its hatchery, feed mill, processing facility, settle unpaid wage bill and statutory obligations.
The farm has a processing plant operating at 10,000 birds per day with one shift and had retooled its commercial farms to bring them up to international standards.
Its hatchery has a capacity to produce six million day old chicks , breeder farms with bird population of 30,000 birds per batch and layer farms with a capacity for 100,000 per batch.
Added to that is a boiler farm with the capacity for 350,000 per cycle of eight weeks, feed mill with an installed capacity of 96 tons of feed per day, corn field of 1,250 acres at Ejura and a storage cold room of 500 tons.
It currently employs 250 people and providing 300 indirect jobs.
At full operation it would give 400 direct and 500 indirect jobs.
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