Ghana hosts UNIDO workshop to boost cotton industry

Kandeh Yumkella - Director General of UNIDO

United Nations Industrial Development Organisation will hold a two-day workshop to improve the competitiveness of the cotton industry in Ghana.

The workshop is aimed at creating awareness on suitable options to increase cotton productivity including the benefits of crop biotechnology in suitable economic development with emphasis on insect tolerant and herbicides tolerant cotton.

The initiative, which is supported by the Government, would assist Ghana to make an informed decision on whether to adopt the technology.

This has been necessary due to the current scientific and bio-safety facts as well as the benefits, lessons and experiences of other African countries.

The workshop is scheduled to take place on June 11 and 12.

It would bring together participants from Ministries of Trade and Industry, Environment, Science and Technology, Food and Agriculture and  cotton farmers from Ghana, Burkina Faso, South Africa and India, researchers and representatives of local and international cotton seed companies, financial institutions, Ghana’s Export Promotion Authority and Ghana Standards Authority.

The workshop is expected provide an in depth understanding to government and relevant stakeholders on the current trends in cotton production that can boost the competitiveness of Ghana’s cotton.

It would also inform stakeholders on the steps necessary to be taken if the option of insects or herbicides tolerant is to be introduced in Ghana.

Some strategic topics to be discussed include increase productivity and reduction cost through the introduction of insect-resistant and herbicides-tolerant cotton and organic cotton production for niche markets and premium value.

The workshop would also tackle enhancement of quality through instrument classification of cotton according to international standards and increase the income of cotton farmers and cooperatives through value addition activities including processing and marketing of cotton seed by-products.

Experts in the production, development and commercialisation of cotton from Burkina Faso, South Africa and India as well as specialist on the acquisition of crop biotechnology would be brought together to deliver presentations on World trends in cotton production, options for improved competiveness of cotton in Ghana and socio-economic impact and benefits of the product.

Source: GNA

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