The Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), an agricultural development organisation, has committed about 30 million dollars in Ghana’s agriculture sector for the next five years.
The support, both financial and technical, according to Dr Agnes Kalibata, President of AGRA, was aimed at enabling the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) in the implementation of its programmes and projects including the ‘Planting for Food and Jobs’ initiative to transform the agricultural sector.
Speaking to the Ghanaian Times at a meeting to present the final draft on the fertiliser subsidy model to Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto, Minister of Food and Agriculture, she explained that AGRA was working on how best it could facilitate and capitalise on its vast expertise from around the continent to ensure the success of government’s programmes.
“AGRA is an institution of experts in agriculture and so we are interested in offering our support and skills to move the agriculture sector as the government envisioned. This is part of our grand objective to get Africa a green revolution,” she added.
Developed and championed by AGRA, the fertiliser subsidy model, Dr Kalibata said was necessary to enable farmers access inputs including improved seeds, fertilisers and other inputs from AGRA through subsidy by government to be able to improve production as well as create capital base for farmers for reinvestment.
AGRA, she said would continue to provide agricultural support services including finance, expertise and inputs to allow individual African nations including Ghana explore profitable agricultural models and other projects to further the growth of the sector.
Dr Akoto for his part reiterated the need for external agencies to continue to support government programmes through expertise, funds and consultancy services required to ensure successful implementation of government programmes.
“It is important that as the implementing agency, there exist a third party to assess, advise and support you to ensure the programme’s success. This is what AGRA is presently offering the MoFA. It is such collaborative efforts that would aid in the realisation of the programme’s intended objectives,” he explained.
AGRA, he disclosed had already supported the Ministry with about two million dollars to help in capturing the data of farms, assess the variety seeds suitable for cultivation and the processing of farm lands for the implementation of the “Planting for Food and Jobs’ programme.