The Export-Import Bank of India (India Exim) has extended a further US$125mn in credit for the financing of a sugar project.

The ECA has made the funding available for the purchase of goods, services, equipment and machinery from Indian companies, which will help construct the Mashkour sugar plant. However, Mashkour is permitted to purchase 25% of the contract value from non-Indian companies.

India Exim has been heavily-involved in Sudan’s sugar sector in recent years, with most of the investment centred on the same plant, being built by the Mashkour Sugar Company.

In 2010, it lent US$150mn for the construction of the 140,000 tonne factory, which is set to produce 70,000 tonnes of sugar and 30 million litres of ethanol by November this year. Last year again, the ECA lent US$125mn to the project, which is being built in the White Nile state in the centre of Sudan.

The major investors in the Mashkour Sugary Company are various government bodies, along with Kenana Sugary Company, a Sudanese private enterprise.

The country has been seeking to become a major player in sugar production by 2020, with analysts noting that it has the requisite land and water to do so. By the end of the decade, it hopes to be producing 10 million tonnes, which would catapult it into the same ballpark as the likes of Thailand, China and the US (but still some way behind Brazil and India).

With domestic demand currently sitting at around 1.2 million tonnes, there would be a huge amount to be exported.