THE Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC) will soon commission the development of a piggery project with a view to establish a modern piggery industry in Lesotho.
The corporation this week signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with an international company Number 2 Piggeries (N2P) for a project estimated to attract an initial investment of M100 million.
The project, which is currently at a preparation phase, is also expected to lead to the creation of 1000 new jobs in the agricultural sector.
N2P already has operations in South Africa and Namibia. The company is reported to be currently employing 1000 workers, including 60 managers while it manages one of South Africa’s most successful piggery businesses Chalala Piggeries in the Western Cape province.
LNDC chief executive officer Mohato Seleke said the project is in line with the corporation’s economic diversification drive as outlined in its new five-year (2018-2023) strategic plan that was launched in July this year.
Mr Seleke has indicated that agriculture would be the corporations’ big story for the next five years with majority of their resources directed towards the sector it.
“The corporation is mandated to initiate, promote and facilitate the development of manufacturing and processing industries, mining and commerce in a manner calculated to raise the level of income and employment in Lesotho.
“It is the intension of the corporation to collaborate with a reputable strategic partners in rolling out industrial-scale projects in the agro-industries.
“The corporation is now commissioning the development of a modern piggery industry in Lesotho in partnership a regional player, Number 2 Piggeries, with significant presence in the distribution channels within Southern African Customs Union (SACU), production, breeding, genetics and primary processing of pork products,” Mr Seleke said.
He continued, “It is estimated that the development of an integrated piggery industry in Lesotho may require over a M100 million in initial investment and such an investment may contribute to the development of related production and supply chains including creation of over 1000 new jobs in the agricultural sector.”
He said the project preparation phase of the project is expected be completed in December 2018.
“The corporation intends to announce and roll out more concluded multi-million investment deals in the agro-industries during September, October and November 2018 covering horticulture and fresh produce, including fresh produce market operations, diary, integrated poultry, and agricultural insurance.”
In July this year the corporation announced expansion of existing investments and attraction of new investors, especially in manufacturing and agro-industries to kick-start its economic diversification drive.
The new expansions in the textile and garment industry and electrical component manufacturing are estimated to result in the creation of up to 4500 permanent jobs for Basotho by the end of the current financial year.
The new investments were Nien Hsien group of companies, which intends to employ about 2000 workers in its new establishment named Glory International, Crabtree – an electrical component assembly firm which will employ 400 permanent workers through their expansion; Jonsson Workwear which intends to employ 500 workers in its new expansion at the Ha Nyenye Industrial complex.
The other new companies are MB workwear, which hopes to employ 1000 permanent workers at the Ha Nyenye Industrial Complex and Vishan Manufacturing which intends to employ 600 permanent workers at the Maputsoe Industrial estate.