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Every district to have a factory by 2022 – Bawumia

Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia says all 254 Metropolitan, Municipal, and Districts Assemblies (MMDAs) in the country will have at least one factory by the end of 2022.

This comes after the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has accused the Akufo-Addo-led government of failing to honour their 2016 campaign promise of building new factories in every district.

NDC flagbearer, John Dramani Mahama, criticised the Akufo-Addo led government for deceiving the people of Ghana by declaring some already existing projects as an initiative of the One District, One Factory policy.

But speaking on the future of the country’s economy as part of the Nation Building Update, Dr. Bawumia said the NPP was on course with its promise.

He further noted that President Akufo-Addo, through a series of strategic initiatives, is implementing innovative and creative ways to add value to the raw materials Ghana has been blessed with, and by so doing create jobs and boost the economy.

“In 4 years, 76 companies are in operation under 1D1F, including the Ekumfi Fruit Processing Company in the Central Region, producers of the now-famous Eku Juice, and, Golden Africa Consumer Products Ghana Limited and Omnifert Fertiliser in the Greater Accra Region. A total of 107 IDIF factories are also under construction. We expect every district to have a factory within the next two years.

“We also have VW, Sinotruk, Kantanka Group, and Nissan all assembling vehicles in Ghana under our new, forward-looking automotive sector development policy with Toyota expected next year,” he said.

According to Dr Bawumia, “Ghana is now in a position to become the automotive hub in West Africa”. This, he said, will “reduce the cost of imports of vehicles and save precious foreign exchange”.

The Vice President enumerated companies like the Ghana Integrated Aluminium Development Corporation (GIADEC) and the Ghana Integrated Iron and Steel Development Corporation (GIISDEC), which according to him, are steadily becoming industries.

All of these, he stated, form the bedrock of Ghana’s strong economy which has helped sustain its citizens during the harsh effects of Covid-19.

“Our economic transformation agenda is on course. In the next four years we will build on the successes of our “One District, One Factory” and “Strategic Anchor Industries” policies to further enhance agro-processing, including cocoa processing, add value to our minerals and petro-chemicals, promote labour-intensive and light manufacturing activities, continue the development of the Aluminium, Iron and Steel industries along their entire value chains through GIADEC and GIISDEC, and leverage our Regional Hub status and as hosts for the Secretariat of the AfCFTA to expand our access to regional and continental markets.

“These things are not happening in a vacuum, and more importantly, they did not happen by accident. It came from our overarching strategy to transform the structure of the economy to add value to our agricultural and natural resources as well as careful planning and execution. We are also building the foundations for industrial development to ensure sustainable, long-term economic growth as well as create jobs,” he added.

The One District, One Factory programme was one of the campaign promises outlined by President Akufo-Addo in 2016. It was officially launched in January 2018 when the NPP came into power.