Mozambican govt shuts down cashew factory
The Mozambican government's National Inspectorate of Economic Activities (INAE) has ordered the closure of a cashew nut processing factory in Macia, in the southern province of Gaza, reports Monday's issue of the independent news-sheet, "Mediafax".
The factory results from an investment of about three million US dollars, and was inaugurated by President Filipe Nyusi in October 2018. The factory is owned by the Portuguese Condor Group.
The factory, which can process 10,000 tonnes of cashew nuts a year, is the largest employer in Macia district, but the INAE decision could make all 700 of its workers unemployed.
It is not yet known why INAE ordered the closure, but some Macia residents have complained about the smoke issued from the burning of the husks of processed cashew nuts.
Workers were prevented from entering the factory on Friday and so they went to the Macia local administration to express their concern about the possible loss of jobs and of income. But the local authorities are also in the dark about the reasons for INAE's decision.
The Ministry of Agriculture, and the Ministry of Industry and Trade are both aware of INAE's decision, but it is not clear what action they plan to take.