The board of the Ghana EXIM Bank has approved a GH¢300million financial seed fund to support various industries in the country.
CEO of the Bank, Lawrence Agyinsam, said the beneficiary industries include oil palm, pineapple, poultry, creative arts, pharmaceutical manufacturing, as well as garment and apparel manufacturing.
In collaboration with the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the bank has also committed to lending financial support to some government special initiatives like 1D1F and stimulus packages for distressed and viable businesses.
Mr. Agyinsam made the disclosure during the launch of a 10-year Cashew Development Plan at Wenchi in the Brong Ahafo Region.
The vision of the Cashew Development Plan (2017-2027) is to aggressively expand, modernise and transform Ghana’s cashew sector into a significant foreign exchange earner, creating jobs and substantial wealth for Ghanaians while enhancing the environment to reduce global warming.
The primary objectives include expanding production of raw cashew nuts from 70,000mt to 300,000mt by 2027, and as well increasing processing capacity from 65,000mt to 300,000mt.
The EXIM Bank CEO indicated that the Bank in 2017 approved GH¢31million in favour of small and medium enterprises engaged in agro-processing and export trade of cashew.
“In 2018, a further GH¢15million has also been approved to support capacity building and production of two million grafted seedlings, with the expectation of increasing production levels significantly.”
It is expected that over 100,000 farmers will benefit from implementation of the master plan, with about 10,000 registered farmers earmarked to benefit from a revolving credit of about GH¢3million.
The overall impact of the programme in terms of foreign exchange revenue is expected to be US$4.6billion. The Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA) is seeking support from key stakeholders, including the Ghana EXIM Bank, to ensure that funding is available for the specific initiatives.