Business News of 2014-03-27

Japan supports Agric Ministry with machinery

Japan has given the Ministry of Food and Agriculture agricultural machinery valued at GH¢6.4 million.
The machinery was procured under the Japanese government’s grant assistance for underprivileged farmers, and its distribution will be targeted at underprivileged smallholder rice farmers across the country through a hire-purchase agreement.
The machinery and equipment include 70 agricultural tractors, 43 power tillers, 35 rice threshers, 20 rice reapers and five rice mills.
Reduce rice importation
Speaking at a ceremony to hand over the equipment to farmers in Accra last Tuesday, the Minister of Food and Agriculture (MoFA), Mr Clement Humado, said the equipment would increase rice production in Ghana and reduce the huge importation of rice.
He said Ghana had the land and the capacity to increase rice production if the appropriate measures were adopted within the trade and the agricultural sectors.
“In Ghana, rice production is undertaken by both smallholders and large commercial farmers. The strategy to achieve self-sufficiency in the production of rice, therefore, must address the special needs of both smallholder and commercial farmers,” he said.
Japanese Ambassador
The Japanese Ambassador to Ghana, Mr Naoto Nikai, commended the efforts of the government at modernising rice production in Ghana to attain self-sufficiency and ensure food security.
“It is against this backdrop that the government of Japan decided to respond to the request by the MoFA to provide assistance to revamp the rice sector in this country,” he said.
According to Mr Nikai, the government of Japan is honoured to contribute to the Ghana government’s endeavour to reduce the importation of rice and improve the lives of Ghanaian farmers.
He gave an assurance of Japan’s support to Ghana to attain food security.
The Executive Director of CFAO Ghana Limited, suppliers of the tractors, Mr Bruno Gobilliard, gave an assurance that the company would provide technical support through the provision of tools and equipment for the beneficiary farmers nationwide.