24 January 2013

Namibia: Ongwediva Fresh Produce Hub Completed

The construction of a Fresh Produce Hub in Ongwediva has been completed, and contractors have already handed over the buildings to the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry in December.

A Chinese construction company, China Jiangsu International, was the main contractor for the Ongwediva Fresh Produce Hub, valued at some N$107 million.

The construction started in September 2010, providing jobs to about 100 local people.

The centre will serve as the central marketing point for fresh produce in northern Namibia.

Another fresh produce hub is under construction in Rundu, while the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry is planning to put up a similar facility in Windhoek.

Site manager Benson Shong told Nampa on Monday that only a few workers are currently on site to do the cleaning up before the official handing over later this year.

Agriculture, Water and Forestry Minister John Mutorwa, speaking at the official launch of the Olushandja Horticultural Marketing Centre in the Omusati region last year, said fresh produce production has the potential to generate income.

The Olushandja Horticultural Marketing Centre, which is also a fresh produce marketing facility, was officially launched and handed over to the leadership of Olushandja fresh producers at the Epalela settlement near Ruacana last year.

Mutorwa said that apart from generating income, fresh produce production has a potential to create employment and can also contribute to economic growth through retention of the money used to import some of the fresh products.

On completion the fresh produce facilities will contain cold storage facilities and will see a variety of activities carried out, such as sorting, grading, packaging, processing of juice and tomato paste, canning of fruits and jam.

According to Shong, the Ongwediva Fresh Produce Hub will market fresh produce from the local horticulture producers to both the local and outside market. - Nampa

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