The German Government has affirmed its commitment to enter into an agreement with Ghana that will require the payment of fair prices for the country’s cocoa and gold.
The move, according to the Germen Federal Minister of Health, Mr Herman Grohe, was in line with Germany’s abhorrence of exploitation of human and natural resources.
Mr Grohe was speaking at a meeting with the Minister of Finance, Mr Seth Terkper, in Accra.
The 17-member German delegation at the meeting included the German Federal Minister of Economic Cooperation and Development, Mr Gerd Muller, two members of the German Federal Parliament, Mr Helmet Heiderich and Mrs Dagmar Wohrl.
The delegation is in Ghana to firm up the Ghana-German cooperation and explore other areas of investment.
Mr Grohe said the meagre prices paid to farmers would deny them the opportunity to fund the education of their children.
Also, he said, miners went through a lot of difficulty in their operations.
“Germany is against exploitation of human and natural resources. We need to change that so that we can give fair prices for cocoa and gold,” he said.
Mr Grohe lauded Ghana for her economic progress and the entrenchment of good governance.
As a result, he said, Germany would increase support to facilitate Ghana’s development and make it a role model in Africa.
Mr Grohe mentioned the decision of the German government to invest in the recycling of electronic waste as an example.
Besides, he said, the German government would support the setting up of an innovation centre to offer technical advice on how to grow the agricultural sector.
Mr Terkper said Ghana had made a lot of progress, but the economy witnessed some challenges in the last two years.
He mentioned the power challenges and the fall in the prices of crude oil as some of the factors that affected the economy and the government’s budget estimates.
Besides, he said, the prices of cocoa and gold also dropped during the period.
However, the finance minister said the government remained committed to building a resilient economy that would withstand any shocks.
He said the government had developed a policy of adding value to cocoa in order to accrue more profit and “bridge the huge value addition gap affecting the farmer”.
Therefore, he expressed the hope that, Germany could take advantage of the policy by establishing companies in Ghana to add value to cocoa.
Mr Terkper said the government had a policy to extend schools and clinics close to rural areas to encourage farmers to send their children to school and also go for medical care.
Source : Graphic Online