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Editorial : Is Ghana’s agricultural development trajectory really so different from that of its neighbours?

For those of you familiar with the history of the African independence movements, Ghana was the third sub-Saharan
country to gain its independence—in 1957, after Liberia (1847) and Sudan (1956)—following boycotts and civil
disobedience driven by Kwame Nkrumah. Ghana has a distinct profile in West Africa, having been a pioneer in
the Pan-Africanism movement and having helped spearhead the Tricontinental Conference, which voiced the first
demands for a more equal multilateralism.

As an English-speaking country that has also been a member of the International Organisation of La Francophonie
since 2006, Ghana differs from its neighbours in many ways. The country is often cited as a model for its political pluralism,
democratic achievements and stability in an increasingly complex regional-security context. Its economy appears
to be more liberal and oriented towards the private sector and agri-business. In terms of international development
aid, the authorities are promoting a Ghana Beyond Aid policy and turning more to international loans and investment.
Ghana’s high food dependency, however, makes the country vulnerable to volatility in global agricultural prices. And
food insecurity is still a challenge that needs to be overcome, with undernutrition affecting 5.5% of the population.

Those differences with Ghana’s French-speaking neighbours—which Inter-réseaux’s members are more familiar with—
in and of themselves justify dedicating an issue of Grain de Sel to Ghana, ten years after having dedicated an issue to
Nigeria . This issue is a continuation of the network’s work on rural development, agriculture and food in Ghana, which
led to the publication on 21 November 2019 of a special bulletin de veille on Ghana, available on Inter-réseaux’s website.
Several articles draw comparisons between Ghana and its neighbours, starting with Ivory Coast and its geographic
similarities. Since independence, however, they have had opposite political and economic development trajectories.

The objective here is to examine the similarities with a neighbouring country, and the differences in the agricultural
development trajectories of a model that sometimes appears to be completely at variance with the orientations of
French-speaking countries in West Africa. This is also a bilingual issue, available in French and English.

Inter-réseaux decided to kick off 2020 by giving Grain de Sel a brand-new look, and our publications committee would
love to hear your feedback.

François Doligez, president
Ninon Avezou, magazine manager

Go to the PDF version : Here

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