Ho, Oct 1, GNA- Mr Nicholas Oteng, Head of Agriculture Credits at the Agricultural Development Bank (ADB), on Friday expressed dissatisfaction that out of the 35 billion cedis credit facility the Bank committed to farmers and other entrepreneurs in the Volta Region, this fiscal year, only 14.1 billion cedis had so far been utilised. He said in 2003 only 13 billion cedis out of an amount of 33.9 billion cedis credit line was utilised, while 6.8 billion cedis of the 20 billion cedis allocated for 2002 was harnessed.
Mr. Oteng was delivering a lecture on: "Financing Agricultural Development and Agro Processing," at the on-going Volta Congress being organised by stakeholders to stimulate the Region's private sector growth and chart a new and accelerated socio-economic development. He urged the business community to take advantage of the Bank's credit facilities to increase productivity. Mr. Oteng entreated farmers to be innovative and add value to their produce to be able to compete on the international market.
Mr. Gobah Tengey, a Businessman said high interest rate and other cost of borrowing were a disincentive and suggested the need for the ADB to set aside a percentage of its marginal profits to assist peasant farmers.
Dr. Dei Tutu, a Business Consultant, urged the Bank to channel funds into the Volta Venture Capital Fund. Dr. Seth Buatsi, a Lecturer at the School of Administration, University of Ghana, Legon called for the review of the process used for accessing bank loans such as the demand for collaterals, bank accounts and feasibility studies, to woo a number of people into agricultural production.