Gulf states target Ghana farmlands

landFarmlands in Ghana are coming under increasing pressure as various interest groups from across the globe are vying for parcels.

There are unresolved questions of conflict between multinationals grabbing lands from poor farmers, mostly women for the cultivation of biofuels, particularly Jatropha, and now news from the Gulf region says countries in the region are targeting farmlands in African countries including Ghana for their food security plans. But what is disturbing is the fact that they are covert about the move.

The countries being targeted are Egypt, Ethiopia, Georgia, Angola, Sudan and Ghana.

A story in the Gulf Times sited by says a consultant advising governments in the region on the deals has told them if they continued with the plan, they risk tarnishing their reputation, especially as there is no transparency.

The report indicates that Gulf countries depend heavily on food imports and following spikes in basic commodity prices, they have decided to buy land in developing countries to ensure food security in the region.

The consultant, Huma Fakhar was quoted by the publication as saying that, “the media has really managed to put a negative spin on these farmland deals, that’s why we are seeing many Gulf countries being less open about them.”

“I am personally aware of serious talks between Saudi Arabia and Ghana about buying farmland,” she said.

Fakhar is chairperson of the Market @ccess Promotion, an international consultancy advising Gulf states on agricultural issues.

“… Since the deals started getting a bad reputation, the owners of the companies no longer disclose their identity,” she added.

The story of land ownership in Ghana is a bleak one. Land issues have led to violent clashes resulting in deaths, displacements and insecurity.

The country’s courts are inundated with hundreds of unresolved land related cases, some lasting more than 30 years. This new development should therefore be worrying, especially so, when the farmlands would be used to produce food crops solely for the Gulf region.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi

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  1. anthony says

    I disagree with this publication because the Gulf is only targeting East African countries. Logistically Ghana is a heavy shipping cost and until there is scarcity in Mozambique, Sudan, Ethiopia I don’t believe Ghana will be an option. Also Egypt is certainly not a candidate..Egypt as a country is also looking and buying farm land so why will they allow others to purchase …This deal is also mainly for wheat and temperate crops. Ghana is not a candidate please.

  2. anthony says

    check this out

    Your source is wrong..any deal with Egypt will be for domestic market. They are also reported to be looking for millions of HA else where. Most of these deals are for wheat!!! Ghana is not prime for Wheat..Gulf not interested in Biofuel now so leave Jatropha out

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