Monday, 29 October 2018

Eni Ghana provides US$3.9m investment fund to boost Western Region local economy

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Adnan Adams Mohammed

Eni Ghana has provided an initial investment fund of US$3.9 million to support an initiatives to help in the diversification of the local economy of the people of Western region.

The initiatives includes activities in the areas of continuous cropping, livestock, husbandry, aquaculture and fishing, processors, and training.
It was jointly designed with the beneficiaries.

The initiatives, which has already started, has imported and distributed 12,750 poultry birds to indigenes within the Sanzule Community in the Western Region.

A statement signed by Ms Mary Bentuma Akotua, Eni Ghana’s External Communications Officer in charge of the Sub-Sahara Africa Region, said: “This plan forms part of the efforts of the Offshore Cape Three Points (OCTP) joint venture – formed by Eni Ghana, Ghana National Petroleum Corporation and Vitol – to support diversification and growth of the economy in the Region”.

The statement said the day old chicks were distributed to the 25 households that chose poultry among the different options provided by the Livelihood Restoration Plan being implemented by Eni.

The chicken, which are from a fertile breed: are expected to start laying eggs in less than six months, and continue to do so for about 18 months, providing households with a steady source of revenue.

“Besides a batch of layer chicken, every household will also get chicken coops, supplies of breeders, feed and drugs, veterinary services, and specific training, mentoring and coaching,” the statement said.

Another 38 households chose a similar programme focusing on piggery, while 39 chose sheep rearing.

Aquaculture was also chosen by 62 households and they would benefit by the set-up and management of fish ponds to be harvested and sold to generate revenue.

According to the statement, catfish had been identified as the most appropriate choice for the ponds to start with because such fishes were well adapted to the area, had higher survival rate than tilapia, and enjoyed strong demand on local markets.

The members of households were allowed to choose the options they wanted to develop.
The Joint Venture (JV) was providing capacity building, direct investment and support for three years, to the benefit of 205 households who had been directly impacted by OCTP activities.  A total of more than 1400 persons would benefit.

Under the project, demonstration farms for aquaculture and livestock keeping have been constructed and equipped with fish, livestock and tools, and are hosting training activities.

Facilities for hair dressing, food, including maize and cassava processing, and soap making have been built, whilst structures for welding, bakery, cold storage, pig sties, advanced smokers, carpentry and masonry were near completion, it said.

Additionally, it said, vocation and technical training activities were underway in a local professional school in Sanzule.

 “It has been equipped for the purpose, and once all the trainings are completed, the training equipment would be formally handed over to the School,” it said.

Eni said Local Rights Programme (LRP) was developed in compliance with International Finance Corporation (IFC) standards, and that the activities were constantly being monitored by the World Bank and IFC.

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