World Bank funded $298.6m pro-poor project reaches more than two million people in Ghana

Pierre Laporte – World Bank Country Director

The World Bank since 2010 has been supporting projects in Ghana aimed at protecting the poor. Cumulatively, the financing provided by the Bank to the tune of $298.6 million has reached more than two million people and bettered their living conditions.

Speaking in Accra at an event Monday December 12, 2022 to close the Ghana Productive Safety Net Project (GPSNP) the Country Director of the Bank, Pierre Laporte said the four-year IDA-financed project has been instrumental in boosting the Ghana government’s social protection agenda.

“The World Bank takes a keen interest in social protection as it is at the heart of our work, evidenced by our twin goals – to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity,” Laporte said.

Mr Laporte also noted that the Bank will continue to support the government.

In a speech read on his behalf, the Minister for Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development, Daniel Botwe said the World Bank committed to scale-up the government’s pro-poor interventions through the GPSNP because of the successful implementation of social protection programmes of the government in the past.

According to the Minister, the GPSNP which started in 2019 and will be closing on December 31, 2022 has provided short-term employment to over 34,500 poor persons through the Labour Intensive Public Works, linked 16,000 beneficiaries to ongoing government flagship agriculture programmes such as Planting for Exports and Rural Development (PERD), distributed 11.9 million cashew, oil palm and coconut seedlings in support of PERD, dispersed an amount of GH¢100.33 million to project beneficiaries as grants for IGA start-up and wages for services provided and reached out to. 20,354 beneficiaries under the Productive Inclusion component to start their own micro enterprises.

He indicated that further that the government created 352 assets in the form of feeder roads, small earth dams and climate change interventions in 405 communities in 80 districts.

He gave the breakdown as 64 feeder roads (251km), 79 small earth dams and 209 plantations totalling 2,022 hectares.

In her remarks, the deputy Minister, who is also Minister-designate of the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Hajia Lariba Zuweira Abudu citing the theme of the programme ‘Leveraging on Digitalization for Effective Social Protection Delivery – The Government Agenda’ said a robust and digitized system for social protection delivery “really helps in the reduction of poverty and inequality. We therefore need to invest more and leverage on digitalization for effective social protection delivery to close existing coverage gaps and reduce poverty.”

Some beneficiaries of the interventions were present to share testimonies of how the programmes have helped to take them out of poverty.

By Emmanuel K Dogbevi

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