Friday, 19 July

MiDA showcases Ghana CARES Programme's investment in economic enclaves to revolutionise agriculture and drive economic growth

General News
Agric landscape

The Millennium Development Authority (MiDA) has announced that the Ghanaian government, through its Ghana CARES “Obaatan Pa” Programme, is making significant strides in transforming the agricultural sector with the Economic Enclaves Project (EEP).

This initiative aims to de-risk agriculture and create substantial value within the national economy.

Speaking at a stakeholder engagement over the weekend, representatives including the CEO of MiDA, Mr Mathew Armah, highlighted the success and progress of several key projects under the EEP:

Kasunya EEP: A 10,000-acre enclave focused on the rice value chain.

Oti EEP: A 20,000-acre enclave dedicated to the production of soya, maize, and other crops.

Kumawu EEP: A 20,000-acre enclave targeting rice, soya, maize, and tomatoes.

Mr. Mathew Armah together with Madam Gifty Sekyere, who spoke on behalf of Eva Mends,Chief Director of the Ministry of Finance noted that since its inception, the EEP has achieved significant milestones.

These include the development of 4,000 acres of land across Kasunya, Oti, and Kumawu, the construction of 80 kilometers of farm access roads, and the training and onboarding of over 300 youth entrepreneurs under the Mastercard Foundation HAPPY Project.

Highlighting specific achievements in Kasunya, it was mentioned that the project has developed 1,000 acres of land, with an additional 800 acres enhanced for optimal rice production. Key infrastructure developments include: 20 kilometers of canals, over 40 kilometers of farm roads, a 2-kilometer earth dam, 20 kilometers of drains, two pumping stations, one water reservoir and electricity connected to new and existing farming infrastructure.

The others are a 450-square-meter warehouse and an equipment hub Housing for 180 youth farmers

The Kumawu Economic Enclave, managed by the National Service Secretariat, encompasses 20,000 acres in the Sekyere Afram Plains district of the Ashanti Region. This land is being developed in stages to produce maize, rice, and other commodities. In 2023, production began on soya, rice, maize, and trial runs of tomatoes. The enclave currently accommodates 50 National Service Personnel (NSPs), with plans to increase this number to 2,490 annually.

To facilitate the movement of machinery and goods, the 48 Engineer Regiment has deployed a pontoon to Dambai. MiDA has also secured $6 million in working capital support and is exploring opportunities for an additional $7 million in climate funds through a partnership with the World Food Programme.

Touching on impact on youth employment, it came to light that the Ghana CARES “Obaatan Pa” project has created jobs for over 1,000 youths in the communities around the enclaves. Over 300 have undergone training programs, and 90% of these trained youths have been onboarded as young entrepreneur farmers in the Kasunya enclave, producing rice on approximately 450 acres of land.

In the Banda Economic Enclave, they said plans are underway to clear and cultivate 3,000 acres and improve road infrastructure. Additionally, the Kumawu Economic Enclave will support the National Service Secretariat in land preparation.

MiDA noted it has received proposals for new sites, including from the Paramount Chief of Sunsong in the Yendi Municipality. Feasibility studies are planned for additional proposals in Twifo, Nkoranza, and Yagaba.

 

Source: Classfmonline.com/Elaine Attoh