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Business News of Sunday, 10 September 2017


Agriculture internship programme for graduates launched

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) in partnership with Africa Lead has initiated an Internship Partnership Network dubbed Entrepreneurship for Opportunity Actualization (EOpAct).

This is to build entrepreneurial and vocational skills among young people to exploit industry opportunities.

The EOpAct, which is being implemented by the Agribusiness in Sustainable Natural African Plant Products (ASNAPP), is intended to bridge the skills-set gap between industry, academia and graduates.

It also seeks to sharpen the skills of young people to fit into the industry while at the same time honing the skills of small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) to become productive, profitable and competitive.

EOpAct is a purely hands-on industry related programme targeting the agricultural and agribusiness value chains specifically horticulture, livestock and grains sector.

Ghanaian youth will get the chance to intern in various Agricultural endeavours in the Agricultural sector under the United States Agency for International Development( USAID) in patnership with Africa Lead.

It is also expected to bridge the gap between industry and academic graduates.

Mr Dan Acquaye, Executive Director for ASNAPP, said at the launch of the EOpAct in Accra that about 30 per cent of Africa’s gross domestic product comes from Agriculture and 70 per cent of the entire African population depends on Agriculture for their livelihood.

He said Agriculture accounts for 40 per cent of Africa’s foreign exchange, and investments in African Agriculture has four times economic impact than investments in any other sector.

Mr Acquaye said Africa has the youngest population in the world and 10 to 12 million youth are added every year while over 40 per cent are under the ages of 15 and 20.

However, he noted that the youth accounts for 60 per cent of Africa’s unemployed, causing about 70 per cent of them to live on less than two dollars a day.

He disclosed that the programme is not limited to students, SMEs, or graduates with agriculture background but also opened to those with other career or academic backgrounds.