Government, Unilever to transform palm oil industry
The government and Unilever have entered into a partnership to transform the Twifo Oil Palm Plantation (TOPP) in the Central Region into a world-class and sustainable oil palm plantation.
Under the partnership, TOPP and the government will work together by committing more investments into the development and expansion of the plantation, support smallholder farmers and also adopt strategies to ensure the plantation improves its impact on the economy.
The partnership was announced during a meeting between Vice-President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia and the Unilever Global Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr Paul Polman in Accra last Thursday.
Mr Polman was on his third visit to the country in the last four years as part of efforts to strengthen the business relationship between the global consumer producer and the country.
Present at the ceremony were the Minister of Agriculture, Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto and other top officials of Unilever.
At the event, Dr Bawumia said the overall vision of the partnership was to develop a well-integrated and sustainable palm oil industry as part of the industrialisation drive of the government.
Oil palm, he said, had the potential to transform the economic fortunes of the country and provide many jobs for people.
He commended Unilever for the partnership, and its support for the economy over the years.
“Your company is a household name on account of the special contributions you have made to job creation and production of top quality brands and products for the Ghanaian market,” the Vice-President said.
Dr Bawumia reiterated the government’s commitment to create the enabling environment for businesses to thrive.
UNILIVER GLOBAL CEO
Mr Polman said the transformation of TOPP was in the interest of both the company’s operations and the agricultural development in the country.
“The transformation of TOPP into a sustainable palm oil plantation will support our business, as well as smallholder agriculture and economic growth in Ghana.
“We are delighted to work with the government, and other stakeholders to realise this ambitious vision and ensure that TOPP is a sustainable operation that serves as best practice for palm oil on the African continent,” he said.
For his part, Dr Akoto reiterated the government’s commitment to transform and modernise the agricultural sector as an engine for economic growth, and the provision of jobs.
“We intend to harness opportunities in the agro-processing and manufacturing industries and are indeed delighted about Unilever’s commitment to support our vision to initiate public-private partnerships as a vehicle for executing this task,” he said.