Developing countries have the obligation to build a knowledge-based economy that would lead to economic revolution and ensure that they compete effectively with the developed nations, Mr Albert Kan-Dapaah, Minister for Defence, has said.
'Developing nations of today are poor largely because of our inability to take advantage of previous economic revolutions that took place in the agricultural, industrial and scientific sectors,' he said in Accra last Wednesday at a reception organised by the Indian High Commission to mark Indian Technical and Economic Co-operation (ITEC) Day.
The ITEC programme, which was launched by the government of India in 1964, has provided training in India in various fields such as Banking, Information Communication and Technology (ICT), audit and accounts, hydrology, management and journalism for almost 30,000 foreign nominees from developing countries.
Mr Kan-Dapaah urged developing countries to take advantage of another emerging economic revolution, which had been sparked by ICT, in order to achieve economic growth and prosperity. He commended the Indian government for the investment and gains made in the field of ICT.
Mr Kan-Dapaah also thanked India for training Ghanaian defence personnel in various defence institutions under ITEC.
Mr Rajesh Nandan Prasad, High Commissioner of India in Ghana, said a total of 1,350 training slots were allotted each year and 800 were earmarked for candidates from Africa. He said 70 training slots had been earmarked for Ghana this year.
Mr Nandan said since the inception of the programme, India had provided technical assistance worth more than two billion dollars to developing countries.
'From construction of hospitals and schools to augmentation of milk production, from lighting of streets with solar power to sharing experience in dry farming techniques, from conducting language courses and feasibility study for the establishment of airlines to showing farmers better use of seeds, ITEC has done all these.'
An ITEC alumnus, Mr John Sampson Davies called for an increase in the training slots for Ghanaians.