A Senior Lecturer at the University of Education, Winneba (UEW), Dr. Ahmed Jinapor, says he will find it extremely difficult to believe if the President Akufo-Addo-led administration will achieve its sets targets for the One-District-One-Factory flagship project by the year 2020.
He is of the firm belief that the government would not be able to even build two hundred (200) factories by the close of the year 2020.
“I don’t want to sound cynical but I doubt if this administration will be able to put up 200 factories by 2020 by the definition of a factory”, he noted.
The government under the leadership of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo intends to set up a factory in each of the 216 districts of the country.
But since assuming office in January 2017, not a single factory has been put up, making the government’s dream of realizing 54 factories each year within the four-year mandate impossible.
In August 2017, President Akufo-Addo at the launch of the Ekumfi Fruits and Juices Limited in the Central Region, unequivocally, stated that 21 factories will be ready for take-off by end of 2017.
But that target was ignored with the National Coordinator of the One-District-One-Factory Program, Gifty Ohene Konadu, stating that they prefer to pursue quality instead of quantity.
Interacting with TV 3, Saturday, May 12, 2018, over the US$400million Chinese facility which was announced by the Vice-President to have been secured by the country to kick start 22 factories, Mr. Jinapor said the slow pace at the which government has started executing the One-District-One-Factory agenda makes it very difficult to achieve the target it has set for itself by the close of 2020.
The project, he noted, is one of the major headaches of the President considering the resources involved in making it a reality.
Nevertheless, he urged the government not to bother itself to build more factories some of which will not be economically viable to repay the loan facility it was used to set up.
“You don’t need 200 factories at all cost. We cannot put up a factory that cannot work. Komenda Sugar Factory should be an example to guide them [Government]. Where are the raw materials? How competitive are these factories going to be? What are they going to produce and how much does it cost to import oil from China? What is the cost benefit analysis of this agenda? So, it is not just that. Where are the businesses that we started under the Presidential Special Initiative under President Kufour? So, we got to do it well. If Ghana has even five factories that are very viable that will take us away from the importation of oil, rice sugar among others, I think it is something that is worth pursuing”, he stressed.