A total of 106 out of 278 factories, incorporated under the One District, One Factory (ID1F),have been fully completed, Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Michael Okyere Baafi, has said.
He said completed factories, have created at least 150,000 direct and indirect jobs for the unemployed youth.
Mr Baafi disclosed these in an exclusive interview with the Ghanaian Times, on the sidelines during the launch of the Ghana Beverage Awards, last Tuesday in Accra.
“The essence of the 1D1F is to get a lot of industry across the country where a lot of people can get employment. As at now, we have incorporated about 278 1D1F companies at various stages of implementation and 106 are fully completed and out of the 106 we have generated almost 150,000 jobs made up of indirect and direct jobs,” he said.
The Deputy Minister said the 1D1F was a private-led initiative of government, aimed at championing industrialisation of the Ghanaian economy.
“What the Ministry does is only facilitation. We facilitate, we give incentive to private sector promoters to promote and undertake business. This are very good opportunities that are available to Ghanaians. I believe 1D1F is a concept that has come to save Ghana and bring about change in the Ghanaian business space,” Mr Baafi, stated.
He indicated that government was providing factories operating 1D1F with tax incentives such as five years tax holidays.
“In Ghana, the corporate tax is 5 per cent, but if you are a 1D1F company, you are exempted from corporate taxes for 5 years and you are also exempted from the payment of import taxes with regards to raw materials for production and machinery for production,” Mr Baafi, said.
He disclosed that government provided soft loans to companies operating under the ID1D initiative, subsidised the interest on loans taken from participating financial institutions of the 1D1F to give them financial relief.
“The general incentives for non-1d1f companies are non-fiscal incentives like the ease of doing business, making the environment equal for everyone to conduct business. These are non-fiscal incentives which cannot be seen however these are practical and helping businesses to thrive in the country.” Mr Baafi, said.
He said “many local people are now venturing into that business of beverage industry. At first, the space was dominated by foreign businesses, but now a lot of local businesses are into that business so we cannot draw conclusions that the space is occupied by foreigners.”
The Deputy Minister observed that government would continue to assist beverage companies which want to operate under the 1D1F.
“It falls within the main agenda of the Ministry of Trade and Industry that we want to champion the course of industralisation in Ghana. We believe this is the way to go now for Ghana to change the whole system into a manufacturing economy where we will be able to produce a lot for export and contribute to some. So that is the main reason we are focusing our attention to support this event that is going on,” Mr Baafi, said.
BY KINGSLEY ASARE