Minister Calls for Establishment of Palm Oil Development Board
The Minister of Trade and Industry Dr Ekwow Spio-Garbrah has called for the establishment of a Palm Oil Development Board (PODB) to oversee policies, regulations, and possible legislations in the industry.
Speaking at the official launch of the Oil Palm Development Association of Ghana (OPDAG) in Accra, Dr Spio-Garbrah said a first step would be a Palm oil stakeholder’s forum to analyse and outline the needs of the various actors, including funding options.
The forum would also scrutinise the growth paths of countries such as Brazil, Malaysia, Indonesia and Ivory Coast to guide the mandate of the PODB and the oil palm value chain to drive growth.
The OPDAG, launched with the support of SoIidaridad West Africa, aims to effectively promote the growth and development of the sector.
According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) world production of palm oil is expected to increase from 45 million tonnes to about 60 million tonnes by 2020.
Africa, which holds 30 per cent of all oil palm agricultural lands, regrettably produces less than 10 per cent of the total world production of palm oil, with Ghana contributing distantly under 1 per cent (0, 8 per cent).
In Ghana, an estimated total land area of 305,758 hectares is cropped to oil palm with a production level of palm oil under 300,000mt, leaving a supply deficit of 35,000mt.