President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has commissioned 75 green houses and an entrepreneurship and innovation centre constructed by the Ministry of Business Development and the National Entrepreneurship and Innovations Plan (NEIP).
He encouraged the Ministry of Business Development (MBD) and NEIP to use the opportunity provided by the greenhouse facility and the multipurpose conference centre, to build the capacity of young entrepreneurs.
This, he noted, will enable them become competitive in vegetable farming, so that they earn a good living for themselves, and create jobs for others.
“Please make good use of this beautiful one hundred and ninety-two (192) bed hostel, which has attached to it a multipurpose conference centre and health and recreational facilities, to train more young entrepreneurs who want to venture into various fields of economic activity,” he said.
Commissioning the facility last Thursday, President Akufo-Addo stated that “this is the biggest green village estate in Ghana, indeed in West Africa”, and will help present agriculture as a decent venture from which Ghanaian youth can earn a livelihood.
With the World Bank estimating that agriculture and agribusiness together could command a US$1 trillion presence in Africa’s continental economy by 2030, compared to US$313 billion in 2010, the President noted that the establishment of the green house estate is of such significance.
“I have been reliably informed that the seventy-five (75) greenhouses here, at Dawhenya, can produce four thousand, five hundred (4,500) tonnes of tomatoes annually, bringing in a yearly revenue of some eleven million cedis (GH¢11 million), and employing a total of two hundred and thirty (230) people. Already, vegetables from this farm are being sold at Shoprite, Farmers Market, Eden Tree, amongst other places,” he said
“This greenhouse initiative, as I have stated before, is an integral part of the Programme for Planting for Food and Jobs. So, I urge the Ministry of Business Development to continue to collaborate effectively with the Ministries of Food and Agriculture and of Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation, to enhance the prospects of success of this venture,” President Akufo-Addo added.
With COVID-19 wreaking havoc on all economies, including those of Ghana, the President noted that it has also presented opportunities, which are being seized by farsighted entrepreneurs.
“We must develop domestic solutions to combat the challenges presented by the pandemic, and strengthen indigenous productive capacity. I charge the Ministry of Business Development to take the lead towards developing domestic businesses into successful enterprises, that can create the much-needed jobs for the masses of our population, especially our youth,” he added.