The European Union, as part of its partnership with the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, is finalising a 147 million-Euro intervention to revolutionarise agriculture in Northern Ghana, while it provides 40 million Euros to the Ministry of Finance in Budgetary Support.
Ambassador Diana Acconcia, the Head of European Union Delegation to Ghana announced this, as part of various financial assistance packages to boost Ghana’s efforts to achieve sustainable socio-economic prosperity and peace.
Ambassador Acconcia, who was interacting with media practitioners on Wednesday, was rolling out a nine-million Euro programme with Civil Society Organisations (CSO-RISE) to finance projects in the fields of employment and social protection.
The agricultural funding would cover family farmers and businesses, who would be assisted to become organised actors with quality products to be distributed along the value chain.
The beneficiaries would embrace new agricultural practices to increase household incomes by producing commodities mostly for the local market to enhance food security.
Additionally, their practices would be geared towards leaving positive impacts on soil and water resources to mitigate the impact of climate change, which is already a problem in the Northern zone.
Explaining the focus on the zone, Ambassador Acconcia said the Savannah Ecological Zone had missed out on economic development, leading to discrepancies in revenue and high level of poverty.
The farmers would have direct access to funds to improve their productive activities, she emphasised.
On the Budgetary support, she said, the relevant agreement would be signed towards ensuring economic stability.
However, to access the funds, the nation has to meet the relevant indicators with regard to economic performance, good governance, a fair labour regime, among others.
She commended the Government’s initiatives towards Fiscal Consolidation in relation to the International Monetary Fund programme (IMF), adding that, maintaining macroeconomic stability would attract investment, and reduce the cost of doing business.
It was imperative, she said, to remain on track with the IMF programme to restore macroeconomic stability because an appropriate monetary policy would improve the credibility of the Central Bank, manage inflation and stabilise the cedi.
“We applaud government for eradicating 12,800 ‘ghost names’ from the public payroll, saving GH¢21 million, removing fuel subsidies…”.
Ambassador Acconcia urged the Government to implement its key legislation such as the Public Financial Management Law and the amendment to the Bank of Ghana Act to support the structural reforms needed to diversify the economy.
She also discussed support to improve youth employment, stem illegal migration, help with the reintegration of returnees and support regional security efforts, democracy and good governance.