World Bank approves $50million for agric dev
5/18/2012 5:35:17 PM -
The Board of Directors of the World Bank (WB) has approved $50 million for the government in the form of budgetary support for the implementation of the country’s Medium Term Agriculture Sector Investment Plan (METASIP).
The WB programme, known as the Agricultural Development Policy Operation, supports important policy and institutional reforms that will enhance the development and adoption of agricultural technology, such as improved seeds and fertiliser application.
This was contained in a release issued to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Accra on Wednesday.
It said a key aspect of the programme was the commercialisation of smallholder schemes and the development of a socially inclusive out-grower model that would attract increased private investment in the sector.
The release said the programme would support accelerated irrigation development and improve governance of the fisheries sector.
“A key result of this facility, which is the second in the series, will increase production and productivity through improved crop yields. This will enhance Ghana’s competitiveness in the sector, expand export agriculture and local food production and increase farmer incomes,” it said.
An Agricultural Economist based in the WB’s Ghana Office, Mr Jan Nijhoff, said “Over the past few years, the World Bank had been scaling up its support to Ghana’s agricultural sector with strategic investments that ensured that the sector continued to grow and contributes to job creation and food security in Ghana.”
“In doing so, the sector is being increasingly modernised and commercialised. It is our expectation that these investments will help leverage additional investment from the private sector and bring thousands of small-holder farmers into commercial value-chains,” it added.
The WB’s current portfolio in Ghana consists of 31 International Development Assistance financed projects with a net commitment of approximately $2 billion.-GNA