Cacuso, Angola, 4 July – The start of operations of Angolan bioenergy company Companhia de Bionergia de Angola (Biocom), focused on production of sugar cane, will lead to construction of sugar, ethanol, alcohol and brandy factories in Malanje province, said the administrator of Pungo Andongo commune.
According to Paulo Hebo, business at Biocom, a partnership between Angolan groups Damer (40 percent) and Sonangol Holding (20 percent) and Brazil’s Odebrecht (40 percent) is currently focused on planting sugar cane and construction of the factories for later processing the product.
Biocom, which represents an investment of US$250 million, is the biggest agri-industrial project associated to renewable energy ever set up in Angola.
It covers a total area of 30,000 hectares and will initially produce 2 million tons of sugar cane, or 500 tons of cane per hour in 200 days of harvest (the target to be reached between 2012 and 2013). Once it is crushed this cane will produce 260,000 tons of sugar and 30,000 litres of anhydrous alcohol.
The Pungo Andongo agricultural project, in its turn, is working at full capacity producing maize and other grain on a large scale and also has factories to produce maize flour.
Cited by Angolan news agency Angop, the commune’s administrator said that a Chinese company was currently involved in work to clear a vast tract of land to set up another agricultural unit due to be built in 2012.
Pungo Andongo is one of the potential economic hubs of the Cacuso municipal area and of Malanje province, as it is where the Capanda hydroelectric dam is located, along with the Pedras Negras tourist area, the Pungo Andongo estate and the Capanda agri-industrial hub.
The region has 23 rural workers’ associations and covers an area of 2,024 square kilometres with an estimated population of 5,200. (macauhub)