The Government of Ghana and Unilever on Thursday announced plans to transform the Twifo Oil Palm Plantation (TOPP) into a state-of-the-art sustainable plantation in the shortest time possible.
This came to light when the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for Unilever Global, Paul Polman, called on Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia at the Flagstaff House.
Dr Bawumia and Mr Polman agreed on a joint vision, outlining their support for the development of a sustainable oil palm industry in Ghana.
Under the agreement, Unilever and the Government of Ghana would work together to develop the plantation, support small holder farmers and help ensure a positive impact on the local economy.
It is expected to initially create between 3,000 and 6,000 jobs as indicated by the Unilever CEO, with the hope of creating 5 million jobs in the near future.
Dr. Bawumia commended Unilever for the support it has offered the Ghanaian economy over the years through its continuous presence and operations in Ghana.
“Your company is a household name on account of the special contributions you have made to job creation and production of top quality brands and products for the Ghanaian market,” he said. He reiterated that government would continue to create the enabling environment for partnerships with the private sector for growth.
Minister for Food and Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, pointed out during the signing of the agreement, “We intend to harness opportunities in the agro-processing and manufacturing industries and are indeed delighted about Unilever’s commitment in supporting of our vision to initiate Public-Private Partnerships as vehicles for executing this task. This specific cooperation will focus on the development of a leading edge oil palm plantation and downstream industry.”
This is Mr. Polman’s third visit to Ghana in the last four years. He was accompanied by the African President of Unilever, Bruno Witvoet; Director of Communications and Corporate Affairs for Africa, Dougie Brew; Executive Vice President for Unilever Ghana and Nigeria, Yaw Nsarkoh; Managing Director of Unilever Ghana, Ziobeieton Yeo and some selected members of the Ghana-Nigeria Leadership team.
Paul Polman also visited the Unilever Ghana factory site in Tema where he interacted with the Board, management and staff of the facility.