10th September, 2018
The Government of Ghana, represented by the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) and the OCP Group are pleased to announce the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on 7th September 2018, by the Hon. Minister of Agriculture, Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto and the Chairman of OCP Group, Mr Mostafa Terrab. The purpose of the MOU is to develop the fertilizer value chain in Ghana as part of the Government of Ghana’s newly designed Fertilizer Expansion Programme (GFEP).
MoFA and the OCP Group (the world's first producer of phosphate-based fertilizers), will work together to optimize the fertilizer value chain in Ghana to provide customized fertilizers at affordable prices to farmers. In line with GFEP, the fertilizer value chain will be improved at the farmer level, with targeted farmer-centric and agronomic initiatives, providing appropriate inputs to farmers and supporting them with adequate training, soil mapping, field trials and fertilizer formula development.
In addition, MoFA and the OCP Group are exploring opportunities to develop the fertilizer production sector of Ghana. In particular, the parties will explore the feasibility of setting up a fertilizer production plant, that could combine natural gas from Ghana and phosphate from Morocco to produce customized high quality and affordable fertilizers. The fertilizer value chain development will further include the introduction of fertilizer blending to allow the production of customized mineral fertilizers that will meet soil- and crop-specific nutrient requirements.
The signed MoU is the starting point, with the aim to assess collaboration opportunities between MoFA and the OCP Group – as well as with other public and private stakeholders. MoFA and the OCP Group have initiated preliminary studies to assess the feasibility of implementing the above- mentioned opportunities. If successful, these initiatives are expected to create jobs, reduce the price of fertilizer, and significantly increase fertilizer consumption by farmers in Ghana, which currently averages at 12kg per hectare. This is far below the Abuja target of 50 kg per hectare and considered among the lowest in the world.
Given the priority the Government of Ghana places on agriculture, a holistic approach has been taken to develop the agricultural sector by well-aimed initiatives, such as the “Planting for Food and Jobs Programme” and the “Ghana Fertilizer Expansion Programme”. Other programs such as “One District, One Factory” further impact the agricultural sector (e.g. food processing, input production).