Bolgatanga, March 30, GNA- The government has demonstrated its commitment to develop the craft industry in the Upper East Region by constructing an ultra- modern crafts centre in Bolgatanga, estimated at 1.6 billion cedis. The provision of the centre would help reduce poverty among the people in Bolgatanga and its environs, the majority of whom owe their sustenance from the weaving of straw baskets and leather works.
The Upper East Regional Minister Mr. Mahami Salifu said this, when he opened the third Bolgatanga Basket Weavers Fair (BOBAFAIR 2004) at Bolgatanga on Monday. Twenty-one groups and 40 individuals, who took home prizes, including T/Shirts, sound systems straw splitters and bicycles, attended the Award and Exhibition Fair.
Mr. Salifu commended the initiators of the fair, saying it would give recognition to the local artisans, who contribute to the development of the country's export trade through the production of Bolga baskets. He appealed to the organizers to strive hard to give the fair a national and even international character. The Regional Minister charged the artisans to access credit facilities instituted by the government to enable them to expand their businesses in order to compete in the world market.
Madam Mariam Mensah, Regional Director of the Export Promotion Council, thanked the Bolgatanga Municipal Assembly, the Japanese International Corporation Agency (JICA) and the Bongo District Assembly for sponsoring the fair.