Vice President John Dramani Mahama on Monday told the Ghanaian community in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, that the government had drawn up agricultural policies to change Ghana from an importer to an exporter of food.
He said apart from acquiring numerous tractors for organised farmers in the country, the government was also investing in the Youth in Agriculture programme to take the country out of its permanent position of importing foodstuff that she could comfortably produce.
Mr. Mahama was interacting with the Ghanaian community as part of his five-day visit to Addis Ababa to attend the 14th Ordinary Session of African Union summit. He is also holding bilateral discussions with groups and governments from other parts of the World.
The Vice President said rice production, for example, had increased tremendously, while other staples such as maize and sorghum had also recorded significant increases.
He urged Ghanaians living in other parts of the country to consider investing in the country to take her to greater heights in the coming years.
“Ghana has the comparative advantage of producing rice, sorghum, millet, cotton and other staples and we shall pay special attention to these areas to ensure that countries in the sub-region and beyond import these foodstuff from us.”
He said the government would in the interim engage a lot more youth in the National Youth Employment Programme (NYEB) while alternative measures were sought to make the country comfortable to live in.
On oil production, the Vice President said the drilling of oil and gas would commence by November this year adding that, “Ghana has the potential of producing about 125,000 barrels of oil a day by 2015.”
Alhaji Muhammad Mumuni, Minister for Foreign Affairs, appealed to the Ghanaians in Addis Ababa to be law abiding and exhibit all the positive Ghanaian values.
He said Ghana was respected everywhere in the world because of her immense contributions in world-wide programmes adding “it will be unfair to exhibit negative attitudes which will consequently tarnish the image of the country”.