Management of the Cocoa Processing Company (CPC) has expressed worry about the delay of a US$3 million stimulus package facility requested from the Trade Ministry to boost operations.
The confectionery manufacturer explained that though the money has been approved since 2017, management has since been frustratingly pursuing its release from the Ghana Exim Bank.
Currently, there has been renewed interest in the demand for CPC’s products from China, Morocco, Australia, and Eastern Europe. This, coupled with the company’s strategy to exploit the opportunities in the West African sub region has heightened its quest for swift financial intervention.
Speaking to the Goldstreet Business, Managing Director of CPC, Nana Agyenim Boateng said the situation of not being able to access the fund, is frustrating but the company has decided to move on.
“We are doing the best we can. We cannot close down the factory because of delays in the stimulus package, while we wait for its disbursement, CPC will continue to operate with the little resources it has”, he said.
Meanwhile, Nana Agyenim indicated that foreign chocolate import to Ghana, as at 2017 was estimated at US$45 million, a situation he described as not encouraging, adding, “ we have the capacity to produce to feed Ghana and the sub region.”
In recent times, CPC has solely been relying on internally generated funds for its operations. However, the company is as well seeking a five year additional loan facility of US$8.5 million to augment production through installation of modern equipment.
Although CPC has a total capacity of 64,500 metric tonnes for its two factories, it is currently processing about 49,000 metric tonnes, constituting 76 percent of production capacity.
At least thirty-five companies are expected to receive financial support under the government’s stimulus package programme for businesses according to the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
Speaking at an annual awards ceremony of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), on December 8, 2018, President Akufo Addo said, US$237 million has so far been disbursed to 16 companies for the stimulus package programme, with additional 35 companies being considered for such support.
By Wisdom Jonny-Nuekpe