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04.11.2004 General News

Germany will deepen cooperation - Ambassador

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Accra, Nov. 4, GNA - Germany is to deepen bilateral cooperation with Ghana to ensure rapid socio-economic development of all parts of the country, Mr Peter Linder, German Ambassador has said.

Speaking to journalists who went on a study tour of some communities in the Brong Ahafo and Ashanti regions to get direct and personal impression on the realisation and outreach of decentralisation projects, Mr Linder said German support for the focal areas of agriculture, private sector and good governance would be enhanced to give meaning to the cooperation between the two countries.

The journalists were accompanied by representatives of the two arms of German Development Cooperation, KfW and GTZ and the Counsellor for Development Cooperation of the German Embassy.

They visited projects at Atebubu, Nkoranza, Techiman and Aduana to learn how the communities were managing and sustaining delivery of adequate public services to citizens.

Mr Linder said Germany's strong support for decentralisation was to help Ghana strengthen the local government system and boost the social and economic potential of communities to enable them to make meaningful contributions to Ghana's development efforts.

"Stabilising rural development is important in the forward march of any country to achieve sustainable development," he said, and added that despite the limited means the projects had made positive impacts on the lives of people within the various communities.

Besides, Mr Linder said, Germany was working to assist the government to strengthen the rule of law as well as battle corruption and enhance transparency, which was essential to good governance. Other areas of support include deepening access of small, medium and micro enterprises to finance, improving the investment climate and boosting rural banks and micro finance institutions.

Before the decision to concentrate on the three focal areas of agriculture, private sector and good governance was reached in 2001, German Development Cooperation was active in eight sectors. The other areas were road transport, reforestation and forestry management, health, education and water.

In almost 45 years of development cooperation, Germany had committed funds totalling 950.5 million Euros for projects and programmes in both financial and technical cooperation. Germany had also recently written off debts owed to her after Ghana reached the completion point of the Highly Indebted Poor Countries Initiative (HIPC). 04 Nov. 04

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