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02.10.2005 Business & Finance

Financial institutions to revive collateral on loans

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Tema, Oct. 02, GNA - Participants at a week-long workshop on Global Food Trade in Tema on Friday urged financial institutions to revive their conditions on loans to farmers in order to make the monies more accessible to them.

They expressed grave concern about big collaterals and business plans required by banks before granting loans to farmers, and said there were normally beyond the means of most of the farmers. The call of the workshop participants was contained in a five-point resolutions passed at the end of their deliberations. It was organised by the General Agricultural Workers Union (GAWU) for 30 cadre cores of farmers and self-employed rural workers (CERW) drawn from the Greater Accra, Ashanti and Brong-Ahafo regions. The workshop was aimed at providing the participants with understanding of the operations of the global trading environment, especially on food trade, and its associated economic implications for rural workers in Ghana.

The participants noted, with concern that, international bodies influenced government policies.

They pointed out that since farmers in the country formed the largest part of the population, they were the worst affected by poverty, and therefore urged the government to come out with strategies that would help alleviate poverty amongst farmers. The participants further urged the World Trade Organisation (WTO) to adopt fair trade practices to enable farmers worldwide to give of their best.

Ms Mariane Holst, representative of the Danish Trade Union Congress pointed out that unless third world nations stopped patronising foreign goods, their fight or crusade against unfair trade practices would only be a mirage.

Mr Samuel Kangah, General Secretary of GAWU asked the workshop participants to go out and share the skills acquired with others who could not have the chance to be part of it. Mr. Kangah commended the media for the positive role played in world trade activities, and urged journalists to continue to champion the course of rural farmers in order to alleviate the level of poverty.

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