ST JOHN’S, Antigua – Antigua & Barbuda Investment Authority said on Monday it would move ahead with plans to establish a multi-million dollar poultry project despite an announcement by one of the partners to pull out.
“We plan to continue with the project,” said a well-placed source within the authority, who did not want to be quoted.
The source said discussions have already been held with the other partner in the project, Ron Mann.
A release over the weekend said Gregg Zacky, a principal in the US $75 million Zacky-Mann poultry farm project, was pulling out due to health reasons.
“He is not to be considered a founder, shareholder, stakeholder or participant in any manner in the proposed poultry operation,” the release read.
It quoted Zacky as saying, “Due to an advancing health condition, I feel that at this time, it would be in my best interest and that of my family, that I concentrate all my efforts on returning to good health. Business opportunities will always be there, but without your health, you can’t enjoy anything.”
Finance and Economy Minister Harold Lovell announced the investment in May, telling supporters at a political rally that the investment, which was still in the planning stages, would create much needed jobs for citizens.
He also said that ground is expected to be broken for the project later this year, although discussions with the US-based investors were still ongoing.
The other partner in the Zacky-Mann poultry investment is Ron Mann. The release said Zacky wished him well with the investment although it is not certain if Mann is still interested in the project.
According to investors, the project would generate 600 construction jobs and 805 permanent jobs in four years. This will require 1,000 acres of land.
(More in today’s Daily OBSERVER)