The chairman of Central Common Cold Store (CCCS), Peter Sinon, congratulated the facility for having effectively and successfully climbed a steep learning curve in the initial year of operations in Seychelles.
Sinon made the statement at the annual general meeting of the CCCS last week in which he said that one of the achievements was that the company had an 80 percent Seychellois staff running the operations.
He said that “their hard work resulted in the company making a modest profit,” which was not specified.
Located on the man-made island of Ile du Port in zone 14, the CCCS provides 12,600 tonnes of cold rental storage to clients who want to freeze their fish at either minus 20 or minus 40 degrees Celsius. It also provides grading, sorting, sizing, and storage of tuna in accordance with the specific requirements of clients since it began its operation in December 2021.
As the company made a profit in 2023, its board of directors agreed to pay their shareholders dividends depending on three critical ongoing factors that are being sorted out.
This includes the conclusion of ongoing re-negotiations with its creditors the Mauritius Commercial Bank and Ile Du Port Handling Services (IPHS) – which is one of its sponsors.
Sinon welcomed the newly introduced ‘tax holiday’ announced by Naadir Hassan, the Minister of Finance, National Planning and Trade in the Budget 2024 address.
He said that this will help “sort out the issues with one of its major foreign tenants that has publicly announced that it has gone into administration.”
The tax holiday is being introduced for five years for new businesses in priority areas such as the Blue Economy, digital economy, and increase in production that will help reduce importation and increase exportation.
Fisheries is the second top economic contributor to the island nation in the western Indian Ocean.
Participants at the meeting also re-elected two members of the CCCS board of directors – Gregory Albert and the chairman, Peter Sinon.
The facility, which took about five years to be completed and cost $37 million, was made possible by both local and foreign investors. The shareholders are the government of Seychelles, the Seychelles Pension Fund, United Concrete Products Seychelles (UCPS), Ile Du Port Handling Services (IPHS) and SAPMER, holding 10 percent shares each.
The Indian Ocean Tuna (IOT) company holds a six percent share, while all Seychellois individuals together hold an 11.5 percent share. The largest shareholder is Luxembourg-based JACCAR Holdings with a 26 percent share.