Local rice production increased by over 30% in 2009 – Mills

Ghana’s local rice production increased by over 30% last year, President John Evans Atta Mills has said.

Giving the State of the Nation Address in Parliament Thursday February 25, 2010, the President said a progressive agriculture policy that will lead to lower food prices and food security is being implemented. “Food security will be a national priority. We will marshal all the resources at Ghana’s disposal to meet this end,” he said.

“For we cannot be a well respected member of the world community of nations when we are importing food produced in countries with less beneficial climate than our own,” he said.

The President wondered why Ghana should import food products that are native to the country’s climate. He said food crops such as plantain, tomatoes, onions should not be imported, but produced locally.

Ghana imports over $500 million worth of rice annually.

Much of Ghana’s economy is agriculture based, but the budgetary allocation of 10% is not often provided to support the sector leaving the sector to struggle for the required investment to develop.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi

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