Maputo — The Korosho Mocambique cashew processing factory in Chiure district, in the northern province of Cabo Delgado, has found itself obliged to lay off half of its work force, due to the terrorist attacks in the province, reports Monday's issue of the independent newssheet "Mediafax".
Chiure is nowhere near the site of any of the terrorist raids - but the jihadists have effectively prevented the movement of raw cashew nuts from the central and northern districts of Cabo Delgado to the processing plant.
The cashew trees are mostly cultivated in the northern parts of the province, and the terrorist attacks have made it impossible to harvest the nuts in many areas. The terrorists have also destroyed trucks laden with nuts and small local warehouses where the nuts are stored.
Before the terrorist attacks spread across northern and central Cabo Delgado, the Korosho Mocambique factory was acquiring between 12 and 15 tonnes of nuts a day. But now only between three and seven tonnes of nuts a day are reaching the factory.
Korosho spokesperson Martinho Goncalves said that in Nangade district, the largest producer of cashew nuts in the province, the jihadists burnt two of Korosho's trucks to ashes. The company now obtains its nuts from producers in Chiure, and from the neighbouring province of Nampula.
Last week, on a visit to Cabo Delgado, the Deputy Minister of Industry and trade, Ludovina Bernardo, urged Korosho to find ways of keeping its workers employed.
Bu the company says that, given the impact of terrorism and of the Covid-19 pandemic, it had no option but to lay off 400 of its 800 workers.