2. Can you tell us about policies that led to better nutritional status as a result of investment into agriculture?
Policies aimed at improving nutritional status through investment in agriculture are vital for development.
The comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) under the AU/NEPAD initiative is aimed at, among other things, reducing food and nutrition insecurity through agriculturally led development. The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has developed the regional agricultural policy (ECOWAP) which outlines the principles and objectives allocated to the agriculture sector as well as guides interventions in agricultural development within the region. A joint ECOWAP/CAADP action plan was developed for the period 2005-2010 by ECOWAS and the NEPAD Secretariat for such development. The ECOWAP/CAADP agenda is an important part of national efforts to provide solid investment programmes at both a national and regional level towards improving the lives of the people.
With respect to Ghana, the CAADP focused on improving existing policies and strategic plans. The goal of reducing food insecurity and poverty called for a coordinated approach for effective development in the agriculture sector.
The Government of Ghana (GoG) compact sets parameters for long term partnership within the agriculture sector, specifies main commitments of both government and partners, and clarifies expectations regarding the agribusiness and farming communities as well as sector policy, budgetary and investment commitments. The compact outlines the intentions of the GoG with regards to the agriculture sector with its ultimate purpose being to increase effectiveness of planning and execution of government efforts, increasing effectiveness of delivery of external assistance in the agriculture sector with both limited transaction costs and coordinated donor support, and providing a solid framework by which assistance can be increases to help meet the short and long term investment needs of the sector. The overall goal is to achieve economic growth as well as development towards ensuring food and nutrition security for the whole population.