Acting Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Carl Greenidge has lauded the Demerara Distillers Limited (DDL) for its construction of a $340M warehouse that will provide employment for numerous Guyanese.
“The Government will continue to encourage and foster enterprises that undertake plans and initiatives that provide employment in all categories of the labour force and I commend the current investments in the human capital especially regarding, scholarships for employees, young people and women,” Greenidge said, while delivering the feature address during the commissioning of the expanded Rum Ageing Warehouse ‘M’ at Plantation Great Diamond, EBD.
The Minister noted that change and competitiveness are crucial if Guyana is to survive in the international market. “DDL has been a leader in many respects and has transitioned into modern times. I commended them for looking down the road and looking up the value chain and seeing improved income,” Minister Greenidge said.
Chairman of DDL Komal Samaroo said the company made a decision last year to expand and $340M was invested in the construction warehouse. However, Samaroo opined that “once filled with rum, the contents in the warehouse will exceed US$10M.”
The facility, which has the capacity to hold 30,000 barrels, is an expansion of the existing four warehouses which have a total capacity for storage and /or processing and handling of 90,000 barrels in a given year.
The new warehouse utilises a section of land, which abuts the drainage canal aback the Diamond Bottling Plant and Diamond Warehouse ‘K’ that was previously left fallow because of poor soil conditions among other issues. By executing significant revetment and earthworks, the land was prepared for the foundation the building measuring 41,625 sq ft.
The warehouse also forms part of the strategic re-alignment of the DDL production facilities east of the East Bank of Demerara public road. By constructing a concrete road with suitable foundation and 20ft width, the traffic connects the Diamond Bottle Plant, Diamond Warehouses ‘K’ and Plant, with a single thoroughfare for access that is better aligned with the public road, and an upgraded secondary roadway for emergency exit.
The Chairman disclosed that that DDL plans to build three other warehouses and has already acquired land for the establishment of these facilities Samaroo also said the company is currently putting together a document to present to the Government for the alignment of the regulatory framework in keeping with international standards and best practices of the rum industry.
Samaroo promised that “DDL will become the pioneer of aged rum on the international market”, The Chairman said that DDL will harvest the remaining of the cane of 2018 and converted for the production of rum and will continue to work the Government of Guyana, the Special Purpose Unit (SPU) and National NICIL to find solutions for the sugar industry.