The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Wednesday, 30th August 2023, commissioned the Electrochem Salt Mine in Sege, in the Ada West district.
The Mine, operated by the McDan Group, currently has the ability to produce some six hundred and fifty thousand metric tons (650,000 MT) of salt per annum. The Mine is expected to increase its productive capacity to one million metric tons in 2024, and to two million metric tons by 2027, making it the biggest salt-producing facility in Africa.
Addressing the gathering at the event, President Akufo-Addo noted that for some fifty-four (54) years, successive Governments have tried, without success, to harness the full value of the Songhor Lagoon.
“I am glad that under the Government of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the Songhor Lagoon is being brought into full production for the benefit of residents of Ada and citizens of the entire nation,” he said.
According to President Akufo-Addo, “The man who is to receive the plaudits for the brilliance of what we are witnessing today is the courageous, excellent entrepreneur, Mr. Daniel McKorley, aka McDan. This is the first time in recent history that an indigenous Ghanaian businessman owns one of the biggest extractive industries in Africa. He is a shining example of what determination and perseverance can produce. Ayekoo!!”
Recounting a news item he came across in the run-up to the 2008 elections, the President stated that he was startled by a news report which suggested that the Federal Republic of Nigeria was in the process of importing two billion dollars’ worth of salt from Brazil.
“You can imagine the thoughts that were running through my mind. Think with me for a moment about the prospects of Ghana selling two billion dollars ($2 billion) worth of salt to Nigeria and the ripple effects the sale of such a simple commodity, which Nigeria and, indeed, many other countries in West Africa import from other continents, can have on our economy,” he added.
As an advocate for value-addition activities since coming into office in January 2017, evidenced in the implementation of the 1-District-1-Factory policy, President Akufo-Addo was delighted that Electrochem is in the process of constructing a salt refinery, in addition to a Port not too far away from here for the purpose of exporting refined salt products to the wider African market.
With Accra serving as the headquarters of the Secretariat of the African Continental Free Trade Area, the President was confident that the expected revenues of some one billion dollars ($1 billion) to the company will be surpassed.
He extended the appreciation of the Government and people of Ghana to the Paramount Chief of the Ada Traditional Area, Nene Abram Kabu Akuaku III, his Chiefs, and to the people of Ada for the support given to the success of the project.
President Akufo-Addo also took notice of the request by McDan in his speech requesting for the construction of some major road projects leading to the mine.
He assured that “I will put these requests before the Minister for Roads and Highways, and ensure that he does his best to construct the roads. I intend to take a personal interest in them.”
The President reiterated his belief that not only is Ghana the best place for doing business in West Africa, but she is also the preferred destination for a perfect blend of mineral resource potential, stable regulatory environment, favourable fiscal regime, and socially responsive mining in Africa.
“In spite of our present challenges, I maintain that it is an exciting time to be in Ghana, and do business in the country. The Akufo-Addo Government is determined to make Ghana an example of rapid economic growth within the context of a well-developed market economy, where the private sector does not only survive, but actually thrives,” President Akufo-Addo stated.