Ghana?s agriculture census gets FAO support

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Kofi Humado - Agric Minister

Kofi Humado ? Agric Minister

The Food and Agriculture Organization, (FAO) Monday signed two agreements with the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, (MOFA) and the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS).

The agreements seek to fulfill the ?Implementation of the Preparatory Phase of the Agriculture Census of Ghana? and ?Empowering Cassava Value Chain Actors to enhance Incomes, Employment and Food Security?.

The projects are under the FAO Technical Cooperation Programme and are designed to catalyst significant investment and improve livelihoods in the agricultural sector.

Dr Lamourdia Thiombiano, FAO Deputy Regional Representative said the agreement was in fulfillment of a request made by the GSS to FAO for support to carry out a Census of Agriculture.

He said the census was important in ensuring food security and that Ghana?s last agricultural census was done in 1985 which was about 30 years ago instead of a five years period.

Dr Thiombiano who is also the FAO Representative to Ghana said the preparatory stage aimed to put in place relevant organs to steer the census activities, strengthen capacity, build technical and operational tools, and prepare administrative and technical aspects for the census.

He said the technical project will contribute to government?s vision to commercialize the cassava sector through a value chain approach.

?It will seek to address some of the less recognized challenges constraining the development of the sector particularly in the Central Region,? he said.

Mr Kofi Humado, Minister of Food and Agriculture said Ghana had an excellent and cordial relationship with the FAO, adding that the agreement showed another manifestation of the country?s good relations with the organization.

Mr Humado said cassava could be used by industries for manufacturing starch, methanol, animal feed among others.

Dr Philomena Nyarko, Government Statistician said it was encouraging that with the support of Government and the FAO, an integrated permanent system of collection and production of agricultural statistics was to be implemented over a five year period.

She said census for agriculture was necessary for the provision of our agrarian and rural economy and for monitoring development initiatives including those targeted at achieving the Millennium Goals.

Dr Nyarko said starting from the second week of January 2014, the GSS will put in place and inaugurate the institutional structures for implementing the census of agriculture namely National Bureau of Census of Agriculture, Technical Committees of Census of Agriculture, Regional and National Committees of Census of Agriculture.

?GSS have already received nominations for the NBCA and the TCCA and will follow up with confirmation for the two other committees which has automatic membership?.

Source: GNA

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