Nat’l Warehouse Receipt System launched

Mr Ahenkorah with the participants after the launch

Mr Ahenkorah with the participants after the launch

The government yesterday launched a National Warehouse Receipt System to boost agricultural production.

The project, a collaboration between five institutions, would help improve access to credits and markets for the agricultural sector in order to improve the business environment for farmers and small scale businesses.

It is also expected to address the low collateral value of inventories, post harvest losses and the quality deterioration of produce due to the lack of storage facilities.

The project is funded by Switzerland through the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) in collaboration with International Finance Corporation, Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ministry of Food and Agriculture and Ghana Commodity Exchange.

The Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Carlos Ahenkorah, launching the project expressed the government’s commitment to expand and promote a sustained approach to poverty reduction.

He said though structured trade reforms had addressed some constraints affecting the production, quality and distribution of agricultural products, there was the need for adequate warehousing facilities to avoid chaos in the market.

“We need to ensure that commodities produced are stored properly and traded in a structured manner to ensure the right standards and the right quality of commodities are produced in order to avoid disjoint between agricultural production and the needs of industry,” he added.

The Warehouse Receipt System, Mr Ahenkorah explained, was an integral part of agricultural trade that seeks to reduce risk of contract and performance default towards facilitating competitive financing in order to allow producers to select the best time to sell their products to maximise profits.

He expressed optimism that the project, with its huge potential would increase farmer’s income, reduce poverty as well as develop a more robust database of agro-export products.

The Swiss Ambassador to Ghana, Mr Markus Dutly said the results of the project would contribute to improving the competitiveness and diversification of Ghana’s economy, adding that this would facilitate the 10-point agenda of government.

Mr Dutly said Ghana was the biggest trade partner of Switzerland and expressed his country’s commitment to collaborate further for the mutual benefit of both countries.

The Country Manager of IFC, Ms Ronke-Amoni Ogunsulire, in a speech read on her behalf indicated that the project would offer technical assistance and advisory services to help facilitate linkage to financing opportunities that can increase credit to farmers and the value chain.

This, she said, would improve and build a congenial atmosphere to scale up production to boost economic growth as well as address the constraints facing farmers in the country.



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