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08.04.2005 Regional News

Juapong thrown into a state of confusion. as ...

By JOY ONLINE
....Juapong Textile Faces Imminent Closure Juapong, a town in the Eastern Region known for Textile manufacturing, has been thrown into a state of confusion following reports that the only textile factory there is about to close down.
The factory provides jobs for nearly thousand people. But that is not the biggest problem.
The inhabitants say their greatest fear is that a water system operated by the company, which supplies water to the community and surrounding villages, will be shut down when the company pulls out by end of June.
Reports say the company's performance since the take-over in 1998 has not been impressive. A memo signed by the technical director, Mark Montil, said an audit report by Price Water House Coopers in 2004 showed that the company was insolvent and its continued operation depended on the support from the management of Vlisco VV Helmond Limited.
The memo further noted that the company's survival also depended on sourcing “grey baft” cloth from the international market, which is 50 per cent cheaper than that on the local market
In view if the developments the company served notification at a shareholders' meeting on March 29 about its decision to suspend operations.
The company, however, says a search for a third party to buy Vlisco shares will continue after the closure although sources say it is proving difficult as a result of the increasing cost of production.
The closure of the company will also affect petty traders who sell pillows made with waste cotton along the Akosombo -Juapong road. The assemblyman for Juapong, Emmanuel Akoto called for government intervention citing fear of an outbreak of waterborne diseases in the area as is likely to happen if the company stops operating the water system.


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