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President Mahama cuts sword for new cement plant
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President John Dramani Mahama yesterday cut the sod for the construction of a 60-million euro cement plant in Tema. It will produce one million tonnes of cement in a year.

Located in the Free Zones enclave, the project is being executed by Cimaf Ciments de L'Afrique, a subsidiary of the Addoha Group of Morocco.

Construction work will take 18 months to complete.

President on cement shortage

Speaking at the ceremony, President Mahama expressed the hope that the completion of the project would help stabilise the price of the product on the market.

He touched on the current price hike in cement and said the situation had links with rumours of an impending shortage of the product.

He dispelled the rumours, saying the five cement plants in the country were operating and so there should be no panic buying.

The President said the investment by the Addoha Group was symbolic of the bond of friendship between Morocco and Ghana.

He stated that in spite of the economic challenges facing Ghana, the country remained the most successful investment destination in West Africa.

Recognising the boom in the construction industry, he said it was the result of the economic growth of the country which currently stood at seven per cent per annum.

He also touched on the housing deficit and said the coming of Addoha would help address the challenge.

First investment

The establishment of the cement plant — the first Moroccan industrial investment in Ghana — is the first phase of a long-term investment drive by the Moroccan group.

Addoha has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the government for the construction of 10,000 social housing units over seven years, totalling about 250 million euros.

It will also construct schools, clinics, playing fields, places of worship, among other projects, in the long term.

The cement project will give direct and indirect jobs to 1,200 people. Addoha, a leader in the social housing sector in Africa, has a turnover of one billion euros.

The project is part of the developer’s objective to partner the Ghana government to provide low-priced social housing for the people.

Cimaf Chairman

The Chairman of Cimaf, Mr Anas Sefrioui, said the King of Morocco believed in South-South cooperation, with Ghana remaining a partner in that respect. He said the cement plant would be managed by Ghanaian expertise.

Haruna Iddrissu

Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Haruna Iddrissu accused manufacturers and retailers in the cement industry of colluding to hike the price of the product.

He said the government would soon come up with a “competition law" to help introduce sanity into the pricing of cement, among other items.
Source: Daily Graphic

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