Government will ‘move heaven and earth’ to deliver the One District, One Factory (1D1F) initiative by the year 2020, Deputy Trade and Industry Minister Robert Ahomka-Lindsay has said.
“Already, in Greater Accra we have 19 businesses that have gone past credit control and are ready to start,” he told the B&FT during an engagement with MMDCEs from the Greater Accra Region and other heads of government institutions in Accra.
Over 700 business plans were received by the Ministry of Trade and Industry as well as the One District, One Factory secretariat sometime last year, of which 600 were analysed and according to the minister 319 of those were bankable.
“The bankable businesses are those we believe have the potential to raise capital. So, toward the end of last year we shared all of these businesses with a number of financial institutions that we have been working with,” he said.
The financial institutions have committed over GH₵2.5billion toward supporting the programme, and the delay in some of the companies taking off, the minister explained, was to allow these financial institutions to undertake due diligence.
Mr. Ahomka-Lindsay also said the target for the year is to ensure that at least 100 businesses have gone beyond due diligence and commenced operations.
The companies are supposed to have not less than 80 percent local ownership, in sectors like agro-processing, manufacturing, livestock, beverage production and wood processing.
Over the past 14 months, the One District, One Factory Secretariat and government have been working to ensure that the District Implementation Support Teams (DIST) are well-versed and equipped to help companies that have their finances ready to set up a factory in one district or another.
The MMDCEs are expected to provide infrastructural support in the form of land, water, electricity, to attract potential investors into the various districts.
He also added that government has set a target for the MMDCEs to achieve five (5) projects by June 2019.
Already, the Ministry of Trade and Industry has engaged the District Implementation Support Teams in seven regions, with the three Northern Regions to be engaged soon.
The One District, One Factory Programme was instituted by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to address the challenge of slow economic growth at the district level, through a massive nationwide industrialisation drive that will equip and empower communities to utilise their local resources to manufacture products which are in high demand both locally and internationally.
The programme is expected to facilitate the creation of between 7,000 to 15,000 jobs per district, and between 1.5 million and 3.2 million nationwide by end of 2020.