The Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Alan Kyerematen, says 150,975 direct and indirect jobs have been created under the One-District, One-Factory (1D1F) programme.
Giving an update on the programme since the beginning to date in Parliament last Wednesday night, the minister explained that there were 278 1D1F projects at various stages of implementation.
Out of that number, Mr Kyerematen said, 104 companies were currently in operation, while 150 were under construction, with 24 at the mobilisation stage.
“It is expected that when the additional 150 1D1F projects currently under construction are completed, the cumulative number of direct and indirect jobs created will reach 282,792,” the minister said.
The 1D1F programme is a government-assisted private sector-led initiative that seeks to provide generous incentives to businesses to set up productive ventures, mainly factories.
It is expected that the factories will increase the country’s export earnings while cutting down on imports due because the factories would produce much of the needs of the country locally.
The minister said 165 out of the 278 companies were new projects, representing 60 per cent, while 113 companies were existing ones that were being supported, and that represented 40 percent.
Mr Kyerematen told the House that the youth had not been left out of the 1D1F programme, as 58 companies were fully owned by youth groups mobilised by the government.
Such youth, he said, were being supported with seed funding to establish their own state-of-the-art agro-processing factories in 58 districts under what was referred to as the Enable Youth 1D1F Initiative.
The initiative, he added, was being supported by the African Development Bank (AfDB) and International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).
“Each of these youth groups have between 40 and 48 individuals as shareholders in each company,” he said.
In addition, he said five medium-scale state-of-the-art agro-processing common user facilities had also been established and they were owned by groups of farmers in five districts, with funding from African Development Bank (AfDB).
He gave the sectoral breakdown of the 1D1F companies as 40.6 per cent being agro-processing companies, 43.9 per cent being manufacturing companies, 7.9 per cent as meat processing (livestock, poultry and fish) and 7.6 per cent representing others.
On the regional basis, Mr Kyerematen said the Ashanti Region had 54 of the projects, Eastern had 37, Greater Accra, 76, Central, 19, Volta, 13, and Northern, six, Upper East, seven, and Western Region, 11.
The rest are Bono Region, 19, Bono East, 10, Upper West, six, Western North, five, Oti, three, Savannah, four, Ahafo, five, and North East Region, three.
He also told the House that since the start of the programme four years ago, the government had successfully mobilised loans for the 128 1D1F companies from participating financial institutions (PFIs) to the tune of GH¢2.69 billion on the back of the interest subsidies of which GH¢1.66 billion had already been disbursed.
“This amount has been leveraged through the disbursement by the government of an amount of GH¢260.9 million to de-risk loans and support interest payment.
“As of July 16, 2021, 148 companies have benefited from loans facilitated by the government.
He mentioned the PFIs involved in the transactions to include GCB Bank Limited, Prudential Bank Limited, Societe General, Universal Merchant Bank, Agricultural Development Bank, GCB Bank Limited, Ecobank Ghana, Standard Chartered Bank, Absa Bank Ghana Limited, CAL Bank Limited and Stanbic Bank Ghana.
The minister disclosed this when he answered a question by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Member of Parliament (MP) for Bole-Bamboi, Mr Yusif Sulemana.
The MP had asked how much had been expended on subsidising loan interests for 1D1F companies, and the list of beneficiaries with matching amounts in the last four years.
“Mr Speaker, it is worth noting that the lending risk associated with the said transactions are borne by the PFIs. The interest subsidies provided by the government are only meant to de-risk the loans extended to the 1D1F companies,” Mr Kyerematen said.
Komenda Sugar Factory
Meanwhile, speaking on the floor of Parliament yesterday, Mr Kyerematen said his outfit, working in collaboration with its transaction advisor, PricewaterhouseCoopers Ghana, was in the process of concluding the conditions precedent for the activation of the concession agreement with the selected strategic investor, Park Agrotech Limited, for it to commence operations at the Komenda Sugar Factory.
He said Park Agrotech Limited was an agro-processing company based in Ghana, which together with its technical partner based in India, had significant expertise in the sugar cultivation and processing industry.
“Working with the transaction advisors, the ministry has painstakingly worked through these various requirements and requests and as part of these arrangements, Park Agrotech has applied for and has been granted 1D1F status by the ministry.
“This will enable Park Agrotech to take advantage of the incentives and benefits as approved by Parliament for 1D1F registered companies and, therefore, to commence operation of the Komenda Sugar Factory expeditiously,” Mr Kyerematen said.
He stated this when he answered a question by the NDC MP for Komenda, Edina, Eguafo, Abrem, Mr Samuel Atta-Mills, who asked why the Komenda Sugar Factory was still closed, and what had happened to the strategic investor the country was promised.