The project will finance the cultivation of 8000 hectares of rubber by 2500 outgrower farmers in over 400 communities in 36 districts.
The fifth phase of Agriculture Development Bank and the Agence Francaise de Development Rubber Outgrower plantation project has been launched in Accra.
The project that is estimated at a total sum of 17.7 million Euros is geared toward the production of 8000 hectres of rubber
The fifth phase of the project, deemed to be the most critical saw the two parties put pen to paper on the release of a concessional loan covering the cost of the project (17.7 million Euros).
The project will finance the cultivation of 8000 hectres of rubber by 2500 outgrower farmers in over 400 communities in 36 districts.
Speaking to the gathering of top level executives of the Agriculture Development Bank and the Agence Francaise de Development at the signing ceremony in ADB's headquarters, the French Ambassador to Ghana, Francois Pujolas expressed delight at the stage of the project and ongoing relationship with ADB.
French Ambassador to Ghana
" After the successful first 3 phases of the rubber project, we are ready to move to the next stage of the rubber outgrower plantation project. And this [financing of the Rubber Outgrower Plantation Project] is the first non- soveriegn loan . This is to prevent further indebtedness to the government to Ghana.
The ambassador added that the "fact that we nstill support the next phase means we believe in the project. Let me also draw your attention to the rubber outgrowers in the success of the project.
The rubber farmers have played a key role just as the Farmers Association. I wish that 5th phase will be as successful as the first phases.
MD of ADB, Stephen Kpordzi
Meanwhile, the Managing Director of ADB, Stephen Kpordzi said the signing marks another success story of the project that started in 1995.
"30.000 hectares of rubber have been already cultivated by 8500 outgrowers at the first 4 phases of the project."
He was also particularly delighted over the high number of female beneficiaries.
"The phase 4 alone saw the cultivation of 10 hectares of rubber by 2500. In all thses, ADB has ensured swift disbursement of funds to the famers."
He however bemoaned the default rate of the loans. According to him, the rates are bigger than neccessary.
We pledge our commitment to finding a solution to the default rate. And with the support of AFD and the neccessary stakeholders."
On her part, President and resident director of AFD, Amelie July, expressed satisfaction at the way and manner ADB has disbursed funds under the Rubber Outgrower Plantation Project, and pledged her outfit's further support to the bank and the project.
"We are here to celebrate a longstanding relationship with Ghana. It has been 30 years of great comittment. So we are grateful to ADB for a great relationship of the project, and we wish to continue in the great work done so far."
Secretary of ADB Board
Secretary of the ADB Board, James Agbedor, representing the board chairman labelled the partnership and the agreement as a very fruitful one.
"The project has increased cultivation from , 10000 to 57,000. We will continue to work together on similar projects."