German Development Corporation (GIZ) has, for the last eight years, injected 33.4 million Euros into various development projects in the Northern Region under the Market-Oriented Agricultural Programme (MOAP). The project, which started in 2005, is aimed at increasing the competitiveness of agricultural producers and other actors in the processing, trade and services sector. Mr Siegfried Leffler, GIZ Ghana Country Director, disclosed this at a ceremony to mark the end of the MOAP project in Tamale on Wednesday. He said the project had achieved remarkable successes in the promotion of selected value chains, given policy advice and strengthened the public and private service delivery systems in the region. Mr Leffler said the project made impacts in three core value chains; chili, guinea fowl and mango, noting that in the chili sub-sector, the project introduced good agricultural practices and trained producers and processors that yielded positive results. In the guinea fowl sub-sector, he said the project taught farmers good feeding, incubation trials, and good management practices for producers and service providers which aided in projecting the guinea fowl as a very marketable bird in the savannah area of the country. Mr Leffler said even though the project was phasing out in the region, the GIZ still maintained two of the projects; “The adaptation of agro-ecosystems to climate change” and the “Competitive African Cotton Initiative”. Mr William Boakye-Acheampong, Northern Regional Director of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, in a speech read for him, said the Ministry collaborated with the MOAP to implement the projects and that it resulted in many successes for farmers. He said even though the commodities in the project were not classified as part of the main food security commodities of the region, through the MOAP interventions, there had been a growing interest by farmers to cultivate and produce those commodities for higher income generation. Mr Bede Ziedeng, Northern Regional Minister, said efforts aimed at improving the living conditions of the people in the Northern Region were appreciated. He said the contributions of GIZ towards the socio-economic development of the people could not be under-estimated and commended it for the efforts.
Source: Ghana News Agency (GNA)