Mr Kwesi Korboe, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Advisor to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture has said that agribusiness goes beyond farming to include all processes in the agriculture value chain.
He said although farming was part of agribusiness, it includes all activities of production, processing, and distribution, hence, the need for business and financial Journalists to help deepen discussions around agribusiness and ensure that the country derived maximum benefit from the sector.
He was speaking at the sixth Institute of Financial and Economic Journalists (IFEJ) Flamingo Award for Business and Financial Journalism held on the theme: “Towards Agribusiness and the Sustainable Development Goals”
The Institute was formed in 1990 with the assistance of the World Bank, Ghana Office to help develop the skills of journalists in business and financial reporting.
The Institute at its annual flagship award recognised business and financial journalists and editors who provided high-quality coverage of the business and financial environment in the country.
At the awards night, Mr Masahudu Ankiilu, an Editor at African Eye Report was adjudged the ultimate winner, having won the categories of Best in Development and Best in Agribusiness Feature/News Story.
Other winners were Charles Benoni Okine of the Graphic Business (Best in Finance), Francisca Sedina Dickson Arhin of GHOne TV (Best in Business/Manufacturing), Jessica Acheampong of Graphic Business (Best in Natural Resources), Ama Achia Amankwa of Graphic Business (Best in Information and Communication Technology), Emmanuel Bruce of Graphic Business (Best in Local Economy) and Marlvin James Dadzie of the New Crusading Guide (Best in Tourism).
Mr Korboe said that there was a need for the leadership of the Institute to put together experts to train members on the sector to further deepen their understanding to help discussions.
He said he would be willing to offer expertise in helping financial journalists to look at the sector from its many angles in the production, processing and distribution.
He said agribusiness has a wider scope with huge potentials to impact the lives of the ordinary Ghanaians since most were already operating in the space.
Mr Korboe commended all the award winners for standing out in the financial and economic journalism space.
Mr Edwin Alfred Provencal, the Chief Executive Officer of the Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation (BOST) said the bane of African development was the relegation of the agribusiness sector to the background.
He said: “We can only develop when we take advantage of our comparative advantage, which is agriculture,” adding that there was the need to align the government’s initiative of One District, One Factory with agribusiness in order to take full advantage of the agriculture sector.
Mr Rayborn Bulley, the President of IFEJ commended the awardees and said the Institute would be focusing on Information for the seventh award with the team: “ICT and its relation to the financial sector”
He called on corporate Ghana to support the Institute in training more economic and financial journalists in the country towards building the bridge between the corporate world and the citizenry.
He said: “IFEJ has always believed that the process of nation-building is everybody’s responsibility but a greater responsibility lies with the journalists to continuously be constructive and not destructive.”