The newly established Salima sugar factory has promised to help bring competition on the market and better prices for the local consumers and export of the sugar which would lead to earning much needed foreign exchange to Malawi.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with Nyasa Times, Apollo company country representative Hemant Kumar Gupta says he is aware of the many challenges the new company would face, but was optimistic the sugar company live up to expectations.
With assistance from Government of India, Government of Malawi is implementing the project under a concessionary line of credit, under the Indian Development and Economic Assistance Scheme (IDEAS).
It was a dream of the late President Bingu wa Mutharika to have another manufacturing facility for sugar as a part of the Green Belt Initiative to make Malawi self-sufficient , provide remunerative prices to the small farmers growing sugar cane , create local employment , fair prices to consumers and create export surplus earning precious foreign exchange .
“Till 2015, Malawi market was dominated by one sugar company , as it had near monopoly being the only manufacturer of sugar. This also meant that farmers had no option but to sell sugarcane to Illovo Sugar at the price determined by them,” observed Gupta.
“In order to help farmers and to have long term effect on sugar prices in the market, it was felt necessary to bring competition to the market. Government of Malawi therefore initiated this project – Salima Sugar Facility, which shall be operated by a joint Venture between Government of Malawi and private international company having experience in Sugar plant,” he added.
According to Gupta, the factory has state of the art machinery and that all sugar produced by the plant in 2016 was pre-sold for consumption in Malawi market.
“Sugar plant capacity is 1250 TCD (Tons Crushed per Day). And Usually the plant operated for 7-9 months a year depending on the availability of the sugarcane. This year the plant was commissioned. And the target to crush around 80-100,000 tons of sugarcane, has been achieved,” he said.
Salima sugar facility was setup by Apollo International Limited (Apollo) on behalf of the Government of Malawi under the Green Belt Initiative and plant was inaugurated by His Excellency , Arthur Peter Mutharika , President of the Republic of Malawi .
Apollo International is a part of Apollo Group which is one of the premier business group in India with impeccable credentials of performance.
The company employs over 17500 personnel world wide and has a turnover in excess of USD 2.5 billion.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :