Cross River State Releases Ultra-Modern Cocoa Processing Plant
The Cross River State Government has finalized processes to concession its ultra-modern Cocoa Processing plant, Ikom to AA Universal Agro Industries Ltd (AAU).
The Governor of the state, Professor Ben Ayade, during the concession agreement signing ceremony at the Conference Hall of his Office, in Calabar, said the development was part of deliberate efforts of his administration to revamp the economy of the state.
However, the governor warned that failure of the company to immediately come to stream would result in revocation of the concession.
His words: “This Cocoa processing plant is one of the industries established by our administration as part of our industrialization policy and its concessioning today is geared towards recalibrating and growing Cross River’s economy; the concessioning is dictated by economic realities and not friendship. Government expects to see chocolate bars from the company soon and if after three months none was produced, the concession will be cancelled.”
According to him, the bidding process leading to the concession was open and competitive, disclosing that AAU came out top apart from being the only indigenous company that indicated interest and took part in the process. On his part, Chairman of AAU, Chief Christopher Agara, assured that the cocoa plant would commence production immediately.
He said, “I can assure Cross Riverians and the world that we have a modern facility that would produce the best finished product that the world, and particularly Cross Riverians would be proud of. Within the next couple of weeks or months we will be ready to hit the market. We are an indigenous company and I am the chairman of the company and we are from Cross River, so we will not disappoint, we will not fail”.