Government to take initiatives to accelerate Agric Sector Performance:

Government to take initiatives to accelerate Agric Sector Performance:

In a move to improve the livelihoods of farmers in the country,the current Akufo-Addo administration is taking steps to boost productivity in the agriculture sector 

The measures that have been put in place are expected to be officially announced at the 2018 edition of the National Farmers’ Day Celebration scheduled to take place on December 7 in Tamale, the Northern Regional capital.

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) administration in 2017 first introduced the ‘Planting for Food and Jobs’ programme, targeting 250,000 farmers.

Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, speaking to the media in Accra, stated that the ‘Planting For Food and Jobs’ initiative, for instance, would be expanded in 2019 and under the expansion programme, the prime focus would be on farmers, inputs and agriculture products.

He added that “this is expected to yield 7.3% and 7.0% for 2019 and 2020 respectively.” Addressing the problem at hand,the Minister also spoke about the fact that "Growth in the sector had dwindled to 0.9% in 2014, 2.3% in 2015, 2.9% in 2016”.

He went on to elucidate that,“The programme is targeted on supplying inputs to farmers, as well as fertilizers and improved seeds, providing farmers with agriculture extension services, helping farmers with marketing channels for their output through organized buffer stock company and licensed buying companies.”

Since the introduction of the ‘Planting for Food and Jobs’ programme, he stated statistics from Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) revealed that agriculture productivity improved by an estimated 6.1 percent.

“In 2018 the number of target farmers has been doubled to 500,000 and a further growth of 6.8% is expected on top the 2017 figure. Note that in both years the number of target farmers was exceeded.”

This year’s Farmers’ Day will begin with a National Agricultural Fair from Thursday, 29th November 2018 and end on Friday, 7th December 2018 at the Aliu Mahama Sports Stadium.

According to the Minister, it would also facilitate a collective assessment of the impact of the agricultural sector on the national economy.