The largest African agribusiness conference and expo has opened in Accra with a call on African countries to introduce measures that will strengthen the incubator system of growing agribusinesses.
Ghana’s Agric minister, Alhaji Mohammed-Munira Limuna told participants yesterday at the Accra International Conference Center that a vibrant incubator system was critical to attaining sustainable growth in the agricultural sector.
He said Ghana for instance had vast agricultural lands with rich ecological systems and the government in its quest to improve agribusiness had reduced prices of fertilizers.
Alhaji Limuna noted that, the Agric sector was going through a transformational process to under pin information and technology in agribusiness and added that more young people had developed interest in agriculture due to measures that had been introduced to improve agriculture.
The three-day conference is on the theme; “Tuning Science into business: inclusive agribusiness incubation for vibrant economies in Africa”. It is being attended by more than 300 participants and exhibitors from around the globe. The annual conference which is organized by the African Agribusiness Incubator Network (AAIN) is being supported this year by the African Development Bank (AfDB), African Union (AU) and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Ghana (MOFA).
Welcoming participants at the conference, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of AAIN, Dr. Alex Ariho said, Africa was still poor and struggling partly because the continent had overlooked many opportunities in the agribusiness sector. He, however, said it was a delight to note that the continent was adopting alternative models that would enrich agribusiness. He urged participants to use the opportunity to explore issues of agribusiness in the continent.
The conference is expected to highlight benefits of agribusiness incubation as well as trade and investment opportunities in Africa. It will also showcase opportunities for youth in agribusiness incubation, different public and private sector actors supporting enterprising start-ups, SMEs engaged in value chain transformation, financing agencies supporting the establishment of agribusiness ventures, agencies supporting trade and investment and banks providing financing and de-risking the sector.
A participant from India, Mr Nikunj Bhaia, lauded the organizers of the conference and indicated that through the conference, he had learnt a lot about agricultural systems in Ghana and Africa in general.