Officials of the Ministry of Energy and National Petroleum Authority (NPA) have toured the newly renovated facilities of Sigma Ghana, a multinational company with 4 ISO certifications and over 24 years of experience manufacturing LPG cylinders in Ghana. The facilities after renovation now have a capacity of producing 1.2 million cylinders per year for the Ghanaian market.
The visit was to enable the ministry and NPA to familiarise themselves with operations of the company and ensure that the cylinders produced are of the highest quality and safe for Ghanaians.
As government prepares itself to roll-out the Cylinder Recirculation Module (CRM) policy, rehabilitation of the Sigma factory falls in line with policy as there will be a big demand for the cylinders in circulation. The officials commended management of Sigma Ghana as a well-positioned company ready to deliver high-quality LPG cylinders which are also affordable to the ordinary citizen.
The CRM module is an LPG marketing model that involves filling LPG cylinders at large refilling plants and then supplying the filled cylinders to consumers at specialised retail outlets called exchange points. Consumers exchange their empty cylinders for a filled one at the exchange point. Given the LPG sector’s importance to the national economy, government has committed to ensuring a reliable supply of LPG as well as increasing current access to LPG from 25 percent to 50 percent nationwide by the year 2030.
The CEO of Sigma Cylinders, Jad Jaber, mentioned that key objectives of the CRM policy – such as increasing access to LPG, ensuring local contact and participation, ensuring sustainable supply and ensuring the existence of robust and standard health, safety and environmental practices in the production, marketing, and consumption of LPG – will help address the influx of substandard cylinders which cause harm to users.
The General Manager, Carlo Zeitounian, noted that “Our market studies indicate that there is a huge influx of refurbished cylinders in the Ghanaian market which comes through known and unknown points of entry; and are often labelled as scrap, refurbished and old cylinders which are not intended to be sold to consumers.
“However, through unscrupulous means they get to the market and are sold at cheap prices. Note these cheaper cylinders have not been duly certified by the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) and do not conform to the requisite health and safety standards required. The danger this poses to Ghanaians and their families is irreversible. It is therefore imperative that all relevant government stakeholders including lawmakers, regulators, security services and the good people of Ghana work in unison toward cleansing the market of all sub-standard refurbished cylinders.
“In the quest to continue being a market leader in the industry, Sigma Ghana has attained product certification from the GSA for our Sigma Cylinders, and this will go a long way to show the preparedness of our organisation to meet market demands while addressing standards and safety issues.
“We at Sigma Cylinders care about the Ghanaian people. We strive to ensure that the products which go into their homes will serve and protect them. As such, we are currently running a safety awareness campaign nationwide about the quality and safety of cylinders.”