The Akwa Ibom Government has announced on Wednesday that the state has started planting of two million coconut seedlings to support its proposed coconut plantation and refining company.
Mr. Etekamba Umoren, the Secretary to the State Government, while speaking to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) said that the coconut refinery was one of the agro-based industries initiated by Gov. Udom Emmanuel.
Umoren said that the coconut plantation and refinery project would boost the industrialisation plan of the state government.
The plantation which is projected to employ more than 500 people, sits on over 11,000 hectares of land situated in the Ikot Abasi, Mkpat Enin and Eastern Obolo communities.
According to the secretary, the state government had imported mulching machines for clearing land for the coconut plantation.
He also said the coconut refining technology would also be used in refining palm kernel oil.
“It is a multi-faceted technology that would refine both coconut oil and palm kernel oil.
He added: “The technology will be the cool press, not hot which is even more expensive than the hot press.
“This is very spectacular as there is no such plant currently in Nigeria,” Umoren said.