Malaysian-based oil palm company in Liberia Sime Darby Plantation, is currently setting up an oil palm mill at its planation site in Grand Cape Mount County, Western Liberia in preparation to process harvested palm into fresh oil for both local and foreign markets.
Company officials led a team of journalists from Monrovia on a tour of the facilities over the weekend. Sime Darby Plantation plays a leading role in the development and promotion of sustainable practices in the palm oil sector globally.
The mill is being assembled at the plantation site and is expected to go into full operation by 2018, according to company engineers. This followed an elaborate groundbreaking ceremony in July 2014.
Chief engineer said when completed, the mill will have the capacity to process about 10 tons of palm head per hour with a monthly quantity of 12,000 barrels. Meantime, a mini-mill is on hand processing about 6,000 barrels per month. Management reveals that a local buyer has already begun to engage the oil for export.
At the plant site, both expatriates and local staffs are busy ensuring that all knots and bolts are tightened to get the mill operational in schedule. Chief Executive Officer Shamaruddia Abu Samah said the plantation is currently cultivating 10,000 hectares of land and looks forward to expanding in the future, if more lands are acquired from the locals.
Mohadrza, manager in charge of operation, noted that relations with the locals have improved, regarding lands and other concerns. Edward Kaizulu, a Liberian contractor working on the construction site of the factory, expressed delight for the employment opportunity and is optimistic the investment will benefit locals in the area and the entire country.