The Ministry of Trade and Industry through the Rural Enterprises Programme (REP) on Tuesday presented three pick-up vehicles and three motorbikes to three farm institutes to support rural economic development.
The institutes are Asuansi Farm Institute, Central Region; the Adidome Farm Institute, Volta Region; and the Wenchi Farm Institute, Brong Ahafo Region.
Mr Allan Kyeremanten, the Minister of Trade and Industry who presented the vehicles and motorbikes to Mr George Boahen Oduro, the Deputy Minister of Food and Agriculture at a short ceremony in Accra, said the logistics were part of government's effort toward achieving the 'Planting for Foods and Jobs Programme'.
Mr Kyeremanten said Government was supported by the African Development Bank and International Fund for Agricultural Development.
He said the goal of REP was to improve the livelihoods and incomes of rural poor micro and small entrepreneurs to generate profit, growth and employment opportunities and that the donation would enhance effective monitoring in the institutes.
The Minister urged the youth to venture into agriculture farming to increase production, saying government would continue to support small and medium enterprises through the 'one district, one factory policy' to boost industrialisation.
He urged the authorities to make good use of the logistics and monitor the activities of the youth who were engaged in the 'planting for foods and jobs programme'.
Mr Oduro thanked the Minister for the gesture and pledged to play a supervisory role in ensuring that the logistics were used for its intended purposes.
Mr Kyeremanten also reconstituted a 12-member steering Committee of the REP with the responsibility to transform the business advisory services into business resource centres to serve as a one-stop enterprise facility for small and medium enterprises.
He said the transformation would enhance decentralisation and boost rural business development.
The Minister said the committee among others would have to promote technology and innovation, ensure rural and industrial development, and coordinate the activities of enabled-youth programme to respond to the needs of supporting youth employment.
Mr Kyeramanten urged the Committee to adhere to the mandate of the programme to upscale and mainstream, within public and private institutional systems, the district-based micro- and small-scale enterprises support system.
The REP is part of the efforts of government initiatives to reduce poverty and improve living conditions in the rural areas. The programme is an upscale of the Rural Enterprises Project - Phases I and II, which were implemented in 66 districts across the country from 1995 to 2011.
The phase I and II project were piloted to at least 161 municipalities and districts in all the ten regions of the country from 2012 to 2020.
By Kodjo Adams/ William Fiabu, GNA