Mondelēz International, owner of Cadbury’s, has laid the cornerstone for the construction of its $90m (£59.6m) biscuit plant in Bahrain as it seeks a firmer foothold in the Middle East. 

The project was announced last October, but full commercial production is not scheduled to start until next year.

Daniel Myers, Mondelēz International executive vice-president, integrated supply chain, said: “This new investment is part of our journey to reinvent our supply chain around the world to meet growth demands, while also reducing costs and improving productivity.”

Mondelēz International’s supply-chain reinvention plan is expected to deliver $3bn in gross productivity savings, $1.5bn in net savings and $1bn in incremental cash between 2014 and 2016.

The Government of Bahrain has reclaimed the necessary land for construction of the new plant, which will have a total capacity of almost 90,000 tons per year. In the first two to three years of operation, the plant will operate four biscuit manufacturing lines, producing – in addition to Oreo, Ritz and belVita – Prince and TUC biscuits, as well Barny cakes.

This project represents Mondelēz International’s second major investment in Bahrain. The world’s leading snacks powerhouse has already invested more than $75m in developing a Kraft Cheese and Tang powdered-beverage plant in Bahrain which has been operational since 2008. It has a production capacity of 110,000 tonnes per year and employs more than 240 people.