Agriculture plays a crucial role in Ghana’s economy, contributing significantly to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).Despite its enormous growth potential, only 4% of bank loans are directed towards the sector. To tackle this challenge, Ghana Incentive-Based Risk-Sharing System for Agriculture Lending (GIRSAL) has set up a Technical Assistance Facility aimed at increasing financial institutions’ lending to the agriculture sector. This is achieved through training programs and study tours that enhance their knowledge of agriculture and Agri-financing.
The tour was fully sponsored and aimed at enabling participants to learn from Kenya’s VegPro Group, a renowned player in the sector. The selected participants were drawn from the 2022 Agriculture and Agribusiness Lending Training cohort, based on their exceptional performance in an essay challenge that tested their knowledge of the agricultural sector. The Agriculture and Agribusiness Lending Training Course provides extensive training on agriculture and agribusiness financing to financial institution professionals such as agriculture desk officers, relationship managers, credit risk officers, and credit analysts. The course is delivered in partnership with the National Banking College, with DBG’s support.
Since its inception, 439 staff from 27 institutions have participated in the training course. GIRSAL and Development Bank Ghana have jointly funded four training cohorts since 2022, with two more scheduled for 2023.
These interventions are examples of programs meant to deliver on the mandates and strategic aims of the sponsoring partners, GIRSAL and DBG. GIRSAL’s mandate is to de-risk agricultural financing and to stimulate increased lending from financial institutions to the agricultural sector.
The institution also provides technical support to financiers to assess, structure and manage agric loans. DBG, on the other hand, supports financial institutions to provide long-term funding and advisory services to Ghanaian businesses and still is committed to accelerating inclusive and sustainable economic transformation by fostering the growth of a competitive private sector.
About VegPro Group
VegPro Group is a leading agribusiness firm in Kenya that has been in operation for over 30 years. The firm has a strong horticultural division that produces, processes, and exports fresh produce and flowers for export to the UK, Europe, and parts of Asia.
Gorge Farm, one of VegPro’s subsidiary farms, produces a wide range of vegetables, fruits, and flowers and uses waste products to produce energy through its biogas operation. VegPro’s Nairobi processing facility employs over 1600 staff, mostly women, and runs a 24-hour shifts system to meet export demand.