The West African Mills Company (WAMCO), a cocoa processing company in Takoradi has plans to invest $5million or more in the purchase of new equipment to help to modernize the existing processing plants and make them fully operational.
The company, which has been granted a free zone status, has three production plants including a Cocoa Liquor Plant, an Expeller plant and a Hydraulic Press Plant (WAMCo2), which is not yet operational.
Mr Frank Bednar, Managing Director of WAMCo, said “We have plans to modernize our plants and present an investment plan to our shareholders for approval”.
He indicated that part of the investment would also be used to revamp WAMCo 2 which needs major repairs and rehabilitation, and when fully operational, will create some 120 jobs.
The two (2) shareholder groups of WAMCo are Hosta International AG from Switzerland being the majority shareholders and the Government of Ghana being the minority shareholders in the company.
The Managing Director of WAMCo revealed this when the Switzerland Ambassador to Ghana, Philipp Stalder paid a visit to the cocoa processing company on Monday.
Representatives of the Ghana Free Zones board, the Ministry of Industry, the Ghana Export Promotion Agency amongst others also joined the factory visit and also had engagements with the Ambassador.
“Some of the major equipment manufacturers such as Buehler are from Switzerland and will be invited to assist in this equipment improving exercise”.
“We are also looking for opportunities to cooperate with Swiss Universities and institutions in the field of food processing, quality management and research”, he added.
Ambassador Stalder said Switzerland is one of the largest producer of chocolate products in the world.
“The Swiss people love chocolate and consume a lot of chocolate, so I am at the premises of the cocoa processing company to see how best companies in my country could partner WAMCo to increase production for export and establish new business relationships with his country”, he explained.
He disclosed that Ghana is the second biggest trade partner of Switzerland in Africa adding “This due to the importation of cocoa and gold”.
He was hopeful that the two countries will continue to collaborate and do business together for their mutual benefit.
From: Estelle Graciela Acquaye, Takoradi