THE Namibia Grape Company located in Aussenkehr in the // Kharas region is now under the full tutelage of the National Youth Service.
The official handover of the company took place on Friday in Aussenkehr and Vice President Nangolo Mbumba officiated at the event.
Mbumba said the change in ownership of the company was a Cabinet decision which mandated the then Ministry of Lands and Resettlement to acquire full ownership of the Namibia Grape Company (NGC) on behalf of the government.
The intention was to transfer him to the National Youth Service (NYS) which is mandated to provide opportunities for personal development and employment for young people, he said.
“Therefore, the ultimate goal of the acquisition of NGC by NYS is to ensure institutional self-reliance and sustainable empowerment of Namibian youth,” Mbumba said.
The NGC was established in 1998 by a group of previously disadvantaged Namibians who secured funding from the Government Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF) to acquire 778.4 hectares of land.
Ownership of the company was taken over by GIPF and in 2007 the government bought all of the shares.
“The transfer process has taken longer than expected,” Mbumba said.
Youth Minister Agnes Tjongarero recognized the essential role played by CapeSpan South Africa through a management and marketing agreement.
Capespan is responsible for global sales and marketing, working with the local Namibian management of NGC. This has resulted in the formation of a vast presence in the Namibian grape market internationally.
Over the years, Capespan has consistently provided a share of the profits to NYS in addition to the capital investments, beyond its contractual obligations.
“I am informed that since the beginning of this collaboration, a total of N $ 78 million has been donated to NYS to support youth development programs, thereby contributing to national development,” said Tjongarero.
Tjongarero said the NYS provided advice to the company, ensuring good corporate governance and a positive contribution to the surrounding community.
“The farm employs up to 2,000 workers during the harvest season, but has 300 permanent employees. Young people occupy around 65% of these jobs, making an important contribution to the fight against youth unemployment, ”Tjongarero said.
Capespan Managing Director Tonie Fuchs said since 2009 Capespan and its government partners have invested over N $ 300 million in farm expansion by 30%, renewed packaging factories, developed cold rooms , training facilities and replaced most of the obsolete grape varieties with new seedless grape varieties. premium varieties.
Fuchs said the company also founded the NGC Foundation.
“With this trust, we have supported local schools, bought ambulances, awarded scholarships and built houses for local teachers. We have really touched the lives of people in the // Kharas region and many others. abroad, ”Fuchs said.
NGC is one of the companies in Aussenkehr which has exported over 30 million kilograms of premium table grapes to major export markets such as the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, South Africa. South and the United States of America during a window period just before Christmas when no other growers can supply these markets.
Their exports were worth over N $ 800 million last year.