GHANA – State-owned enterprise, GIHOC Distilleries, which is the only surviving unit under the erstwhile Ghana Industrial Holding Company (GIHOC) is not for sale, a Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Kweku Ricketts-Hagan, has stated.
He said government did not intend to sell GIHOC Distilleries as being speculated, but it was rather looking for a strategic partner who would not just bring in capital, but also help to develop new markets through an effective marketing plan.
“Government cannot continue to pump money into such companies due to the current economic challenges so we are looking for partners to be able to expand this company and create more jobs”, he said.
The deputy minister said this when he paid a familiarisation visit to the factory in Accra this week.
The visit was to understand the challenges facing the company.
The Quality Control Manager of GIHOC Distilleries, Mr Abraham Neequaye, told the Daily Graphic that the company currently had the capacity to produce 406,000 cartons of drinks a month but currently produced at just 35 per cent capacity due to lack of quality alcohol.
He said the alcohol it used was imported from France which increased the cost of production. Mr Neequaye also added that the company was currently unable to meet both its local and foreign demand.
“The local demand for our products is about 200,000 cartons a month but we are able to produce just 70,000”, said Mr Neequaye.
According to him, the company currently sold about 108, 000 cartons monthly both locally and internationally. “We currently export to Nigeria, Benin, Togo, USA, and the UK”, he added.
Contribution of the company to economy
The management of GIHOC Distilleries in a statement indicated that the company made a profit before tax of about GH¢4.8 million for the 2013 financial year and paid a dividend of GH¢300, 000 on the 2012 operating profit.
The statement said the dividend payments were made despite the desperate need for investible funds to complete ongoing projects.
It further stated that the company paid an amount of GH¢1.125 million as corporate income tax, and a total of GH¢3.482 million and GH¢7.050 for VAT and Excise Duty respectively.