Graphic Business News

Agric

MoFA cited for duplication of programmes

By: Emmanuel Bruce

The Finance Committee in Parliament has cited the Ministry of Food and Agricultural (MoFA) for the duplication of programmes.

The committee observed that some of the programmes that were contained in its Ghana Agricultural Sector Investment Programme (GASIP) were fairly duplicated in the same ministry's Modernising Agriculture Programme.

As a result, the committee has directed the ministry to undertake an audit of all of its programmes and realign those found to be duplicated under the relevant programme to ensure efficiency.

This was contained in the committee's report on the request for tax waiver on imports amounting to US$1.25 million on goods and equipment to be procured for the implementation of GASIP.

GASIP
As part of measures to address the numerous challenges in the country's agricultural sector and make the sector attractive again, the government introduced the GASIP in 2015.

Transform agric waste into input for industry •Govt urged

By: Jessica Acheampong

The Director of Acquatic World Industries Limited, Ms Mabel Quarshie, has called on government to create an enabling environment to ensure that the agricultural sector benefits from all other sectors of the economy.

She said while the sector played a key role in aiding manufacturing, the country was losing out on how to process the waste from the agric sector to serve as input for industry and an employment avenue for people.

Speaking in an interview on July 31 after a GRAPHIC BUSINESS/ Stanbic Bank Breakfast Meeting in Accra, Ms Quarshie said processing waste into useful inputs for other sectors would encourage people to go into the sector because they would earn additional income.

“If I am going into an industry where I know that I will have use for my byproducts and it gives me additional income aside my mainstream production that I am involved in, then I will increase production,” she said after the forum which was on the theme: “Unlocking eco

Agric subsidy policy needs structuring — Oteng-Gyasi

By: Ama Amankwah Baafi

THE Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Tropical Cables and Conductors Limited, Dr Tony Oteng-Gyasi, has said it is about time the country structured agricultural subsidies to encourage production.

He said the current strategy of subsidising inputs did not guarantee that the country would get to the production stage.

Speaking at the GRAPHIC BUSINESS / Stanbic Bank Breakfast meeting in Accra, he expressed concern about inefficiency, leakages and diversion of subsidised inputs; citing instances where subsidised fertilisers are smuggled to neighbouring countries (because it is cheaper here) and been used to grow marijuana.

“If you structure your subsidy such that you subsidise only products, that is if I will buy all the maize you produce at a price that will give you money—you know that until you produce the maize you don’t get money. So, whatever you will do to produce you will do it,” he said.

Agric, manufacturing can spur transformation

By: Ama Amankwah Baafi

The General Secretary of the General Agricultural Workers Union (GAWU), Mr Edward Kareweh, has said a strong linkage between agriculture and manufacturing can create the necessary synergies to transform the Ghanaian economy.

“We need serious thinking on how to create the integration and synergy between agric and manufacturing.

“We should know that manufacturing is an extension of agric because manufacturing is processing, and we need to process agric produce before it can reach the final consumption stage,” he stated in an interview on the role of agriculture in manufacturing ahead of the GRAPHIC BUSINESS/Stanbic Bank breakfast meeting today.

He noted that the primary activity of manufacturing was agriculture in the sense that the inputs needed by industry for processing mostly came from agriculture. There is the need to develop both sectors bearing in mind the linkage.

 Mr Kareweh said it was not just an issue of a desire to produce for

Parliament backtracks on own recommendations • Grants US$6.5m tax exemption to COCOBOD

By: Emmanuel Bruce

After recommending to Parliament last year that the 2017/2018 season should be the last time the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) is exempted from the payment of tax stamp duty, the Finance Committee has backtracked on its stance.

Rather, it has recommended to the House to once again grant COCOBOD a tax exemption of US$6.5 million on its US$1.3 billion syndicated loan.

Section 32 (6) of the Stamp Duty Act, 2015 (Act 689) requires that loan documents should be stamped at 0.5 per cent of the loan amount, however, COCOBOD has over the years been exempted from paying this stamp duty in order to ensure that the trade finance facility was used solely for the purchase of cocoa beans and related expenses.

This position was expected to change this year because the finance committee in its report on the syndicated loan last year recommended that COCOBOD be made to pay for the Stamp Duty starting from this year, a recommendation which was adopted by the house and