Papua New Guinea was chosen as a site for this facility due to its proximity to a very large tuna fishing area, access to Lomé Convention markets and the ease of loading / unloading. Wewak was chosen ahead of other locations in Papua New Guinea due to the existence of an established tuna transshipment point, a large available workforce, adequate port and infrastructure, a good water supply, and most importantly a strong level of local support. Within the Wewak area several sites were considered, but the site next to the wharf, with an adequate area for development and the existence of an established industrial area in the vicinity of the development site, became the preferred location.
Situated within the township of Wewak, East Sepik Province, the tuna processing facilities of SSTC exist north of the Wewak Golf Course and the newly built football stadium at the Mission Point. SSTC processing facilities are located within 300m away from the coast and less than 50m from the mouth of the nearest Wirui Creek. Purse Seiners/ carrier vessels returning with their catch to Wewak Harbor.
SSTC produces two products from the tuna, the export frozen pre-cooked tuna loins and flakes, fishmeal and crude tuna fish oil with skipjack, yellowfin and big eye as the major species processed. With its modern processing and cold storage facilities, maintaining quality of raw materials and finished goods is readily achievable.
Labor requirements number approximately 2,000 people, working in two shifts. Of this total, up to 32 will be expatriates, as approved by the Department of Labor, whilst the rest will be recruited locally and trained.
The complex is composed of the main processing plant, cold storage, power plant, steam plant, wastewater treatment plant, fishmeal plant, laboratories (sensory, chemistry and microbiology), store rooms and warehouses, administrative offices, and staff facilities (canteen, rest rooms, lockers).
Timing and Scheduling
The facility was commissioned in February 2004, and slowly increased its processing capacity through the same year, until by December 2004 to present it has been operating in excess of 120 metric tons per day.