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Agricultural sector essential to economic development - EU Deputy Head of Mission

EU Head of Mission, Ghana (Pieter Smidt Van Gelder)

The European Union Deputy Head of Mission to Ghana, Pieter Smidt Van Gelder has observed that the agricultural sector is essential to economic development of the people, particularly the vulnerable in society.

He said in view of this, the EU through the EU-Ghana Agricultural Programme, EU-GAP is promoting the sector.

Speaking at the launch of the second edition of the Agribusiness Fair and Conference in Wa on Wednesday, he indicated that the objective is to improve livelihood of the people, especially at the community level.

“Our common objective is to improve the quality of life of communities who derive most of their income from agriculture.

The focus is to ensure that the small holder farmers have the means to move out from pure subsistence, to developing a small enterprise, for those ready to do so.” he said.

On his part, the Minister for Food and Agriculture, by Richard Twumasi Ankrah of the Policy, Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Directorate of the ministry, in a speech read on his behalf, noted that the theme for this year’s event “Boosting Agribusiness Potential of North Western Ghana”, is in line with government’s initiatives to improve the livelihoods of the people through agriculture.

He said the target of the Sustainable Development goals cannot be achieved if they relent on their efforts.

“Hon. Chairman, ladies and gentlemen, there is no doubt that the agriculture sector of Ghana needs to be transformed to trigger the socio-economic development of the nation, to achieve the objective of providing lifeline for millions of households in terms of food and jobs.

It is in this light that Government has intensified its efforts to develop the sector through interventions such as the Planting for Food and Jobs, the Rearing for Food and Jobs, Planting for Export & Rural Development etc. The results of these interventions are evidenced in improved yields of promoted value chains and job creations.” the Minister said in a statement.

Some interventions in the agriculture sector, he identified include the planting for Food and Jobs programme.