According to the Chinese Economic and Commercial Counsellor Chai Zhijing, China will assist the Ghana government in constructing a brand new cocoa processing plant.
Chai revealed the news on the 9th of May, after a number of Chinese experts called on the management of Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) to talk about the project.
Chai also added that there are now Chinese experts on the ground in Ghana to carry out feasibility studies in relation to the project.
“The main purpose for the visit to Ghana is to see how much it will cost to build such a processing factory with capacity of 40,000 tones,” Chai said.
“There are a lot of technical details involved in building a factory which will be the basis for the final decision by the Chinese government.’
In addition, the Chinese counsellor also stated that the Chinese government are very keen to support Ghana in exporting value added products – including cocoa – which is primarily their reasoning behind the cocoa processing factory.
According to Joseph Boahen Aidoo, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana COCOBOB, the total projected cost of the factory – which will be located in Sefwi Wiawso, almost 400km north-west of the capital andone of the major cocoa producing areas in Ghana – is $60m.
“Due to the volatility of prices in the international cocoa market, Ghana seeks to develop new cocoa consumption markets for the product. Meanwhile the conventional cocoa market, in Europe and America has become stagnant but there is a new consumption pattern emerging in Asia, especially in China which we seek to explore,” Aidoo explained.
Aidoo also added that the conception of the new plant was very timely, and will add further support to the current government vision to turn Ghana into an industrialised nation.