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14.11.2005 Business & Finance

Parliament adopts loan agreements

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Accra, Nov. 14, GNA - Parliament on Friday adopted the reports on two loan agreements between the Government of Ghana and the African Development Fund (ADF) for the financing of a sustainable tsetse and trypanosomiasis-free areas in East and West Africa and the second Poverty Reduction Support Loan (PRSL II).

The first loan agreement adopted was for an amount of 6,640,000 Units of Account (UA) and a grant of UA 240,000 for the financing of a sustainable tsetse and trypanosomiasis control, which seeks to support Ghana and Sub-Saharan Africa by integrating suppression, control and eradication technology while ensuring that reclaimed areas are equitably, sustainable and economically exploited.

Presenting the report, Mrs Grace Coleman, Chairman of the Finance Committee, said the Committee observed that the socio-economic consequences of the disease area serious.

"Apart from the serious constraint trypanosomiasis has been to livestock production, the fly is the transmitter of the usually fatal disease of sleeping sickness to humans."

Mrs Coleman said the Committee further observed that the creation of a sustainable tsetse and trypanosomiasis-free area in East and West Africa was expected to contribute to poverty reduction and food security improvement in Ghana.

She said the Committee noted that apart from approving the loan agreement, the House was also being requested to grant tax and duty exemptions amounting to 1,316,003 dollars for the purchase and importation of equipment for the project.

The loan has a 40 years repayment period with a 10-year grace period and without any interest.

It is expected that the first phase of the project, which is expected to begin this year, would be completed within six years from the effective date after which the second and third phases would start. The second loan of 44 million UA meant for the second Poverty Reduction Support Loan (PRSL II) seeks to support the Government's economic reform efforts as outlined in the Ghana Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS).

Mrs Coleman said the ADF in collaboration with other development partners would provide support to the Government to facilitate the implementation of the reforms and contribute towards Ghana's external financing requirements.