President Akufo-Addo Commissions Africa’s Biggest Salt Mine Operated By McDan Group5 min read
The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has commissioned the Electrochem Salt Mine and Processing Plant, operated by Electrochem Ghana Limited, a subsidiary of the McDan Group of companies, in Sege, in the Ada West district of the Greater Accra Region.
The Electrochem Salt Mine and Processing Plant 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 by the end of next year, 2024, and to two million metric tons by the year 2025. This effectively makes the Electrochem Salt Mine and Processing Plant, the biggest salt producing facility on the Africa continent.
Dream come true
Addressing attendees of the commissioning ceremony at the mining site in Ada today, Wednesday, 30 August 2023, President Akufo-Addo stated that for some fifty-four (54) years, successive governments have tried, without success, to harness the full value of the Songor Lagoon and to that end, he is excited that during his tenure in office, the vision of turning the Songor Lagoon into a profitable venture.
“I am glad that under the Government of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the Songor Lagoon is being brought into full production for the benefit of residents of Ada and citizens of the entire nation.
“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!!” President Akufo-Addo said.
Recounting a news item, he came across in the run-up to the 2008 elections, the President stated that he was startled by the 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,” President Akufo-Addo said.
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, indicated that he was “delighted that Electrochem is in the process of constructing a salt refinery, in addition to a port not too far away from the salt mine 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” Akufo-Addo said.
President Akufo-Addo in his address stated that he has taken note of the request by McDan in his speech requesting for the construction of some major road projects lead to the mine.
“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” President Akufo-Addo assured the Chairman of the McDan Group.
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.
The Secretary General of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat, Wamkele Mene, the Greater Accra Regional Minister, Henry Quartey, Minister for Trade and Industry, K.T. Hammond, and the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, all graced the occasion with their presence and short statements of support for the salt mining vision of the McDan group of companies.
Electrochem Ghana Ltd is a Ghanaian salt producing company licensed to operate the Songor salt mining concession located in Ada in the Greater Accra Region. The company was incorporated in 2017 as a fully owned Ghanaian company in accordance with provisions in the Companies Act, 2019 (ACT 992).
The mining license for Electrochem Ghana was granted in 2020. It is a fifteen-year (15) mining lease, with its accompanying mining license. it was granted by the Government of Ghana for the development and operation of the Songor salt mining concession.
This grant was applied for, and made to Electrochem, by the Government of Ghana, in line with the provisions in the 1992 Constitution of Ghana on the management of mineral resources in Ghana, the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006 (ACT 703), Minerals and Mining (Amendment) Act, 2019 (ACT 995) and several other legislations that underpin the licensing of the operations of Electrochem and the statutory obligations towards its stakeholders, both state and non-state stakeholders.
Electrochem’s salt concession covers an area of approximately 41,000 acres lying within the jurisdiction of both the Ada East and Ada West local government administrative districts
Electrochem’s operations commenced in January 2021 with a steely resolve to revamp the national asset to a production capacity of about 1,000,000 metric tons of first-rate salt (of 99.9% purity) per annum.
From Wilberforce Asare