The government of Nigeria and Rwanda have signed multimillion dollar deals with a Nigerian investor, the Blackpace Africa Group, in an effort to revamp and develop the potato industries upscaling the production in the countries. as well as set up potato processing facilities in the both countries.
The company is also expected to set up potato processing facilities in both countries.
In Rwanda, the five-year project which worths US $120 million involves the building of two potato factories; one in the Kigali Special Economic Zone for frozen French fries, and another in Nyabihu District to produce potato products for the export market.
The group will also build a world-class facility to process 60,000 tons annually of Irish potatoes into French fries, flakes, and crisps in the Nigerian Plateau State as part of a US $103 million projects.
Potato in Africa’s agriculture economy is often considered solely as food substance. Too often the full economic potential of the potato value chain to the region’s economy and importance in contribution toward providing food security in the continent is overlooked.
A recent study by BlackPace research highlighted that the Irish Potato, which currently is the fourth most important staple in the world, made a significant economic contribution to the GDP of potato producing countries in the continent. Coupled with providing high nutritional value and health benefits, however, most African countries producing potatoes have not made efficient use of its importance.
BlackPace Africa’s Cros Agro has significant interest and is investing hugely in Africa’s Potato value chain.
Currently, there’s a joint venture/PPP agreement with the Plateau State government to scale up potato cultivation and processing. An initial investment of $65m USD has been put together and in completion a total of $103m USD would have been invested. This will create a financial boost to Plateau State’s economy and create over 3,000 new jobs.
A similar investment is being undertaken in Rwanda, where the estimated Potato value chain will add close to $3.5billion to Rwanda’s GDP within the next 5 years if the investment is properly executed with the support of internal and external stakeholders. Our strategy is to boost the economy of Africa using simple, tried and tested strategies in the Potato value chain. Beyond the food security objective, the plan is to have Africa increase its Potato economic potential and maximize growth as a global player.
“Our strategy is to boost the economy of Africa using simple, tried and tested strategies in the Potato value chain. Beyond the food security objective, the plan is to have Africa increase its Potato economic potential and maximize growth as a global player,” the company said.
Frontpage February 9, 2018