Xinavane, Mozambique, 30 July – Production of sugar at the Xinavane plant in Mozambique’s Maputo province is predicted to reach 180,000 tons in 2009, compared to the 61,000 tons produced in 2005, a company executive said.
Antonio Ferronha, financial director of the sugar refinery, told Noticias newspaper that the company aimed to put 74,000 tons of sugar from this year’s harvest for sale on national and international markets.
To reach its boosted production target in 2009, the Xinavane refinery will receive investments of over US$ 100 million from its shareholders, Tongaat-Hulett of South Africa (with an 88 percent stake) and the Mozambican state (12 percent of shares).
This expansion program is primarily geared to take advantage of the European Union’s opening of sugar markets to the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group of former European colonies under the Everything But Arms program.
The Xinavane refinery expects to process around 680,000 tons of its own sugar cane this year, in addition to supplies from private growers.
“In the coming year, we will plant another 6,000 hectares of sugar cane, which will create more jobs,” said Ferronha.
The company predicts its sugar cane production will reach 1.5 million tons by 2009 from an area of 12,000 hectares.
The Xinavane refinery is one of the biggest sugar plants in Mozambique, employing over 5,000, in addition to seasonal labor, and the workforce is expected to grow considerably due to the levels of investment being made in the factory. (macauhub)