Effects of Human Capital on Maize Production in Ghana Essay

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Agriculture constitutes about one-third of GDP and provides employment for about two-thirds of the labor force in Sub-Saharan Africa. Productivity growth in agriculture is therefore an important element for economic growth and development. Yet, growth in this sector has been slow. According to the World Bank (1989), agricultural growth for the continent from 1980 to 1989 averaged only 1.8% per year. Therefore, “improving this growth rate is of increasing concern for both governments and international organizations” (Pinckney 1995). Investing in the human capital base is regarded as one of the most effective ways to improve agricultural productivity (Nelson and Phelps, 1966; Romer, 1990; Bindlish and Evenson, 1997; Birdsall et al., 1999).…show more content…
Rivera (1998) argues that education, irrespective of the form, improves productivity to a very significant extent.
1.2 Problem Statement
Agriculture is a very important sector in the Ghanaian economy. Although its contribution to GDP decreased from 43.5% in 1990 to 21.5% in 2013, it still remains a significant player in the economy of the country (Ghana Statistical Service 2008; ISSER 2011; CIA 2013). The agricultural sector employs about 60% of the workforce in Ghana and can therefore be regarded as the backbone of the Ghanaian economy (ISSER, 2011).
Maize is the most important cereal crop produced in Ghana and it is also the most widely consumed staple food in Ghana (Morris et al., 1999). Maize accounts for 55% of grain output in the country. Maize is also an important component of poultry feed and to a lesser extent the livestock feed sector, as well as a substitute for the brewing industry.
Although maize productivity has been increasing over the years, studies show that Ghanaian farmers are yet to produce enough to meet the nation’s demand. The most recent domestic production data shows that the shortfall between domestic production and consumption would reach 267,000 Mt by 2015 if there were no productivity improvements (MOFA, 2011), prolonging the continual
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