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Cape Verde's largest exporter expects to increase production by 20% by 2020

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Cape Verde's largest exporter expects to increase production by 20% by 2020

The fish processing company Frescomar, located on the island of São Vicente, expects to increase next year's current production of 51 million canning cans by 20%, reinforcing Cape Verde's largest exporter status.

Speaking to Lusa, Frescomar's commercial director, Luís Pinto, explained that the company mainly works with mackerel, tuna and tuna, caught in Cape Verde, currently employing 1,650 workers.

Only in Frescomar's main factory, in São Vicente, the prospect, given the forecast of production growth, which currently still involves 25,000 tons of processed fish, is to reach 2,000 workers next year.

“Maybe by the end of 2020 we will reach 2,500 people (the whole group in Cape Verde). We are Cape Verdean's largest private employer, ”explained Luís Pinto, referring to all the units that the Spanish fish processing group Ubago, owner of Frescomar since 2008, when it took over its revitalization.

In addition to Cape Verde and Spain, the Ubago group has fish and canning processing units in Portugal and Morocco.

In Cape Verde, the group, which accounts for 80% of national exports, has its Frescomar factory in São Vicente and the concession of a local fishing unloading pier in Mindelo. In the same city, the Ubago group also has a cold store, while on the island of Sal there is another unit for receiving fish.

"By 2020 we are forecasting a production growth of around 15 to 20%," said Luís Pinto.

By resolution of May of this year, the Cape Verdean Government and Frescomar SA agreed an investment contract for the modernization of the group, which foresees, in the document, the increase in the export volume of fish and the hiring of 250 workers, among them. the islands of Sao Vicente and Sal.

The investment contract stated that Frescomar (together with the associated companies ATUNLO CV and FRESCOMARCPCI) has an annual turnover of 30 million euros, expected to double in the next two years.

This increase is justified by the EUR 8 million investment contract, with the construction – a project in progress since 2018 and included in this investment contract – of a 2,400 tonne frozen fish storage chamber, purchase of ferries and freezer containers and a support boat capable of transporting and freezing fish.

It also involved the installation at the São Vicente factory of a new fillet canning line, the expansion of the fishmeal and oil production line, and the completion of the fishing complex on the island of Sal.

“These projects will have a major impact on the economy of the country, with a particular focus on the islands of São Vicente and Sal, where they will increase regular direct jobs, predominantly accessible to women, and significantly increase indirect and income-generating activities, ”reads the investment contract of May 9, 2019.

The contract provided for the State to grant tax incentives to the private group, such as exemption from customs duties and payment of VAT on the importation of various goods, raw materials and machinery.

Also the exemption from taxation of corporate income tax for five years from August 25, 2019, as well as the exemption from taxation of dividends and profits distributed to shareholders.

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