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13.11.2004 Business & Finance

ADB releases $800,000 for Afram Plains Dev't study

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Donkokrom (E/R), Nov. 13, GNA - The African Development Bank (ADB) has released a grant of 800,000 dollars for the implementation of the Afram Plains Development Study Programme. Messrs Masdar International Consultant based in the United Kingdom is undertaking the study programme.

The objective of the study was to identify viable and sustainable programmes and projects, which would improve agriculture and thereby increase income and reduce poverty in the Afram Plains District, where two projects would be selected for a future financing.

The proposed study would be in two phases involving the collection and detailed review and analysis of all available documents related to the study and the collection of additional data through socio-economic surveys using participatory techniques.

This was announced by Mr Tony Stubbings, team leader of Masdar International Consultant at a one-day stakeholders seminar for 74 heads of the various agriculture sectors in the country. They include livestock, food crop farmers, fishermen, assembly members and other members of the study programme committee at Donkorkrom on Thursday. He said since the aim of the programme was to alleviate poverty through increase agricultural production, it would focus its activities on commercial operations with support from the private sector to enhance employment creation for the youth.

Mr Stubbings said, the study would include feeder and urban roads construction, establishment of processing factories to enhance evacuation and processing of produce and the construction of boreholes and dams for the provision of portable water for the people and for irrigation farming.

The District Chief Executive, Mr Benjamin Anokye said, the district, with an area of about 5,000 square kilometres, could provide adequate land for large scale farming for food, livestock and fish production for local consumption and for export.

He said the main problem facing the district, which he noted, would also affect large scale agricultural production, was the lack of access roads since the area could only be reached by the use of ferries being operated from Ekye Amanfrom and Agodeke to Adawso and Kpando respectively.

The DCE, therefore, called for the construction of a road to Agogo in the Ashanti-Akyem North District to link other parts of the country to facilitate effective evacuation of goods and services from the area. Mr Patty Samdzie, a large-scale farmer at Maame Krobo, who cultivates 300 acres of maize annually, appealed for adequate supply of agriculture inputs, such as tractors, fertilizes weedicides and markets to enhance production.

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