Government to launch “White Gold” campaign to revamp cotton industry

Government would launch a programme to revive the cotton industry next month dubbed: “White Gold” campaign at the cotton producing zones.

A statement signed by Nana Akrasi Sarpong, Acting Director of Communications and Public Affairs of the Ministry of Trade and Industry, said the campaign was aimed at encouraging farmers in the Northern, Upper East and Upper West regions to grow cotton in the 2011 farming season.

It is in collaboration with private companies which have been assigned zones to carry out production in the cotton belt which would by pre-finance production and purchasing of seed cotton.

The statement said the campaign was being led by Mr Mahama Ayariga, out-going Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Ghana Cotton Company Limited.

As part of the reforms, the cotton belt has been zoned into three – north-eastern; north-western; and north central – and allocated to companies with exclusive rights to pre-finance production and purchase seed cotton in the various zones.

The northeast zone comprises Kassena-Nankana; Tongo/Nabdam; Bawku West; Bawku Municipality; Garu-Tempane; Bongo/Builsa; West Mamprusi’ East Mamprusi; Bunkpurugu; Gushiegu; Saboba Chereponi and Zabzugu.

The northwest zone comprises Sissala East; Sissala West; Jirapa Lanbussie; Lawra; Nadowli; Wa East; Wa West and Wa Municipality.

The north central is made up of Tamale; Savelugu; Tolon-Kumbungu; Yendi; Bimbilla; Wulensi; Salaga; Bole; Buipe; Sawla-Tuna Kalba and Kpandai.

It said the campaign would take place from February 21- February 26 in the northwest Zone; from February 28-March 5 in the north-central zone; and from March 7- March 24 in the northeast zone.

The Minister of Food and Agriculture, Mr Kwesi Ahwoi, will launch the campaign in the northwest zone at Tumu on February 26, while Vice President John Dramani Mahama would perform the formal launch of the north-central zone on March 5 at Nanton, and the northeast zone at Garu on March 24.

The statement said President John Evans Atta Mills in 2010 embarked on a programme to revamp the almost collapsed cotton industry with two major policy decisions being taken and implemented.

Under the first policy, the Ghana Cotton Company Limited shall no longer be involved in the production of seed cotton, but would focus on ginning of cotton.

The northeast zone has been allocated to Wienco Ghana Limited in partnership with Geo-Cotton, a French company; the northwest zone has been allocated to Olam Ghana Limited while the north central zone has been allocated to Plexus in partnership with Amjarn Ghana Limited.

“The government of Ghana is working closely with development partners, including the World Bank, International Finance Corporation, UN Industrial Development Organisation and the African Development Bank, among other (companies) to develop the appropriate institutional and regulatory framework to support a rapid revival of the sector.”

The statement said it was expected that in the 2011 season, about 100,000 farmers would get involved in cotton farming and benefit from the impressive world market price of cotton.

Source: GNA

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.