The Agricultural Development Bank held the 10th National Farmers Forum in Ho, Volta Region as part of the Bank’s sponsorship of the National Farmers’ Day Award.
The event which took place at the Chances Hotel on the theme “Enhancing Small Scale Agriculture towards Agribusiness Development” was graced by Ministers of State, Management from ADB, Experts in the field of Agriculture and the 2019 National Best Farmer Awardees.
The Deputy Managing Director of ADB, Mr Alhassan Yakubu-Tali in his speech reiterated the Bank’s commitment to the commercialisation of agriculture in the country.
“We believe in the commercialisation of agriculture irrespective of size. The government has shown enormous commitment towards positioning the agriculture sector as a key sector to propelling the country to the next developmental level”, he said.
Mr Yakubu-Tali said Government had exhibited “enormous” commitment to transforming the agricultural sector with its cutting edge flagship programmes, spurring the Bank to extend its support to all farming endeavours, irrespective of size.
“We appreciate the tremendous role played by our farmers and fishers in feeding the nation, and providing the raw materials to stimulate industrialisation. We, at ADB pledge our unflinching support to stand with you in your endeavours,” he said.
Mr Yakubu-Tali said ADB remained a strategic partner in the realisation of Government’s “wonderful” initiatives, and had committed over GH¢170 million towards the implementation of the Planting for Food and Jobs initiative alone, notably in the production and marketing of grains.
He said the Bank was also neck deep in engagements with foreign investors towards the establishment of agro processing industries.
The Deputy Managing Director said the Bank was also providing a Green Climate Fund for the promotion of climate-smart agriculture, and also promoted its agro finance department to a division.
“ADB remains your bank of choice as far as agro financing is concerned in the country, and we have cemented this by elevating our agricultural finance department into an agribusiness division”, he said.
Madam Angela Dannson, Director of Policy Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation at the Ministry of Food and Agriculture asked farmers to seize opportunities embedded in Government’s flagship programmes to transform agriculture and increase their incomes.
She further asked them to constantly engage local Agric Officers, and respond to the policies and programmes promoted within the sector.
“You must engage your local Agric Officers and familiarise with them. They are working because of you and you must make use of them”, she said.
Mr Francis Ato Cudjoe, Deputy Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development said government injected extra investments into the fisheries sector, leading to an increase in premix fuel allocation, and the construction of more breakwaters, and landing beaches.
He asked fish farmers to adopt the new biosecurity measures introduced to stem the killing of fish.
The forum offers the platform for stakeholders including; farmers, fishers and financiers to deliberate on issues pertaining to the agro sector and provide feedback to enhance policies and programmes.
The General Manager, Agribusiness at ADB, Mr. Kwame Asiedu Attrams in his presentation urged said the Bank had tailored made products for all within the agricultural value chain.
Mr. Attrams urged Farmers to do proper book keeping enabling them access loans from Banks like ADB.