Ahead of the mid-year budget presentation by the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, poultry farmers in the Ashanti region, are calling for a poultry insurance system to be initiated to support their members.
They believe this will provide security to poultry farmers during outbreaks and also make financial institutions comfortable in dealing with them.
In an interview with the media, Ashanti Regional Chairman of the Poultry Farmers Association, Dr. Boris Baidoo noted that the poultry farmers say the conditions in Ghana do not favour them as they face many obstacles in their line of work.
This has forced some poultry farms to even collapse. But the leadership of the Poultry Farmers Association in the Ashanti Region believe this can be resolved once a poultry insurance scheme is introduced to provide them with job security, just like what exists in other developed countries.
“One thing I think the government has to take a look at is agricultural insurance. Because in Europe, we have it to enable every farmer insure his/her farm. It also makes the banks comfortable and takes off the so-called high risk that they talk about every time. This is something we need to look at,” he said.
They are also calling on government to liaise with the Bank of Ghana and financial institutions to strategically reduce the interest rate for poultry farmers, especially as they have been negatively affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Another issue is that, facing the agriculture sector is that, government needs to look at how we get facilities from banks. To be honest with you, we need not provide collaterals up to a 100 or 120 percent before we can get agriculture facilities. As you have heard, the prices of eggs have increased. It is not our making, we have increased it because we are still enjoying the same commercial rate like other people on the market, whereas the Bank of Ghana has brought the Ghana reference rate to 14. 5,” he noted.
“Under normal circumstances, the banks should be slashing some few margins from it. They are not doing that. Rather, they are still giving the commercial rate to the people. If you give him a commercial rate like somebody doing business in oil, in gold or whatever, if we have the same rate, how do you expect Agric to be the key?” he added.