He added that from the government’s projection rice imports will end by 2022.
This is coming after Ghana did not import maize between January and September this year due to increased local maize production.
In an interview on Accra-based Kingdom FM, Kennedy Nyarko Osei said: “we import billion dollars of rice into the country but the Agric Ministry led by Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto is determined that by the end of 2022 we will stop importing rice from other countries based on our projections.”
“The two crops we are focusing on are rice and soya; soya because of the poultry industry and rice because of import substitution,” he added.
The Ghanaian government introduced its flagship agricultural project dubbed: ‘Planting For Food and Jobs” about two years ago.
“Changing the structure of our economy through diversification and value addition will not happen overnight. It remains a major pre-occupation of the government because it is our pathway to reduce dependency, expand the economy, create jobs, increase exports, reduce imports and support the value of our currency.”
He added that the government is committed to the agricultural sector growth, with an initial focus on support to smallholder farmers.
Ghana would save close to a billion dollars if the country put a stop to rice imports.