Duvets from waste matter

Duvets from waste matter

MASERU – THE Small Businesses Ministry last Monday launched a M7.4 million machine that manufactures duvets from waste materials as part of the country’s industrialization agenda.

The Minister of Small Business, Chalane Phori, said the local textile industry had previously been exporting waste material to China where it was used to produce clothing items.

However, China has stopped taking in the waste material citing lack of storage space and environmental concerns.
Stranded with piles of waste, an idea was born to buy a machine that manufactures duvets and blankets from waste material, said Phori.

“We took a trip to China with other departments like Basotho Enterprises Development Corporation (BEDCO),” the minister said.
Three machines caught the team’s interest in China: one for toothpick production, another used to manufacture egg trays from waste material and the duvet machine.

Phori said the firm that is going to manufacture the duvets and blankets will operate from the premises of the Livestock Produce Marketing Services (LPMS) and will be under government administration.

He said the machine was bought using the money given to the ministry for capacity building.
Phori said the blankets will mainly be for export.

“Ninety-five percent of the moving blankets will be exported to America where they have a large lucrative market,’’ he said.
He said they are tapping the United States market through the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).

’’We urged ourselves as a ministry to work with people who already know about this business,’’ he said.
He said the ministry has invited a consultant to teach Basotho how to operate the machine.
‘‘Basotho are going to own 30 percent shareholding in the firm while at least 400 people will be hired,’’ he said.

Refiloe Mpobole

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