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Home     |    Ghana>>     |     Ministries>>     |      Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources

Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources


The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources is the sector Ministry entrusted with the management of Ghana's land, forest, wildlife and mineral resources.


To ensure the sustainable management and utilisation of Ghana 's lands, forests, wildlife and mineral resources for socio-economic growth and development. This is achieved through:

  • efficient formulation, implementation, coordination, monitoring and evaluation of policies and programmes of sector agencies;
  • efficient and equitable land delivery;
  • promotion of sustainable forest, wildlife and mineral resource management and utilization;
  • promotion of effective inter-agency and cross-sectoral linkages;
  • creation of an enabling environment for effective private sector participation; and
  • promotion of effective community participation in multiple use of land, forest wildlife and mineral resources.


The Ministry's activities and implementation of the current reforms are in pursuance of its set aims and objectives. These are:

  • Develop and manage sustainable lands, forest, wildlife and mineral resources;
  • To facilitate equitable access, benefit sharing from and security to land, forest and mineral resources;
  • Promote public awareness and local communities participation in sustainable forest, wildlife and land use management and utilization;
  • To review, update, harmonise and consolidate existing legislation and policies affecting land, forest and mineral resources;
  • To promote and facilitate effective private sector participation in land service delivery, forest, wildlife and mineral resource management and utilization;
  • Develop and maintain effective institutional capacity and capability at the national, regional, district and community levels for land, forest, wildlife and mineral service delivery;
  • Develop and research into problems of forest, wildlife, mineral resources and land use;


The Ministry is responsible for:

  • Policy formulation;
  • Co-ordination;
  •  Monitoring and Evaluation;
  • Validation of Policies, Programmes and Projects;
  • Supervision of Sector Departments and Agencies; and
  • Negotiations with Development Partners.




To address the problems in the sub-sector, the Ministry is implementing a Land Administration Project (LAP). This Project involves all the Land Sector Agencies and the Town and Country Planning Department which however is not under the Ministry.

The first phase commenced in October 2003 and will run until 2008, with the focus on developing a sustainable and well functioning land administration system that is fair, transparent, cost-effective, efficient, client-centred and de-centralised. Expected outputs of this phase include the following:

  •  A harmonised and streamlined policy and legislative framework; including land-use planning.
  •  An efficient and cost effective One-Stop-Service centre for land administration services
  • Improved security of tenure through systematic land titling, establishment of customary land secretariats and customary boundary demarcations
  • A re-engineered, self-financing institutional structure.


The following activities have been undertaken:

  • Proposals have been prepared, through participatory processes, for the consolidation of all the land laws into one comprehensive law and the merger of the six public land sector agencies into one institution.
  • Inventory of thirty one (31) state acquired sites in Accra and eight hundred and eighty-four (884) sites in the Central Region with the objective of preparing appropriate policy responses to address outstanding issues on compulsory acquisition and compensation.
  • The establishment of three Customary Lands Secretariats (Gbawe, Greater Accra Region; Wassa-Amenfi, Western Region and Tabiase, Upper West Region) and the strengthening of two existing secretariats (The Asantehene's Lands Secretariat, Ashanti Region; and the Okyehene's Lands Secretariat, Kyebi, Eastern Region) to improve customary land administration.
  • Four Deed Registries have been established in Sekondi, Sunyani Koforidua and Tamale in addition to the two registries existing in Kumasi and Accra . This is the beginning of the process of decentralising the registration of land transactions and the preparation of the grounds for eventual title registration.
  • The process of systematic land titling on pilot basis has commenced in two sections of District 03 in Accra (Cantonments, Ringway Estates and Labone) and in Kumasi . It is estimated that about 2,700 parcels will be issued with title certificates. The benefits to be derived include improved security of tenure, cheap, fast and safe handling of land transactions.
  • Customary boundary demarcation has commenced in Wasa Amenfi in the Western Region and Ejisu in the Ashanti Region. Stakeholder sensitisation and consultations have been held with Paramountcies that share boundaries with these traditional areas to inform, educate and seek their cooperation for take off of the fieldwork. The exercise will improve on security of tenure and certainty of land rights/holding and also serve as an incentive for attracting investment.
  • Extensive collaboration and participatory meetings have been held across the country with the Judiciary and the various Houses of Chiefs (Regional and National), key stakeholders and civil society on the reform processes to create awareness, provide a platform for participation and to solicit views.
  • The project has also undertaken a scoping study on gender and land and the key recommendation is that the land sector should have a gender strategy, which is being worked on.

Under their specific mandates the various land sector departments and agencies have also undertaken some important activities. Some of these include:

  • Mapping of 512 kilometres of coast line of Ghana for tourism development, development of salt industry, checking of coastal erosion and the extension of Ghana 's continental shelf beyond the 200 nautical miles exclusive economic zone to facilitate oil exploration.
  • Preparation of large scale maps for planning and developmental purposes and rating valuation. Some of the towns covered include Savelugu, Mampong, Yendi, Nkoranza, Nsawam, Aflao, Obuasi and Madina.
  • Valuation and revaluation of properties of Metro/Municipal/District Assemblies to improve their revenue generation base. Some of these assemblies are Mpohor Wassa East, North Tongu , New Juaben and Kumasi Metropolitan Assemblies.
  • Redevelopment of selected Government Residential areas in Cantonments, Ridge, Roman Ridge and Switchback Road areas in Accra to increase the density of development to take advantage of the existing infrastructure. This is being undertaken jointly by the Lands Commission and the Ministry of Works and Housing.


1. In order to restore the forest cover of the nation and to create employment for the rural and depressed urban communities, the Ministry is implementing six forest plantation projects.

These are:

  • The Modified Taungya System (implemented by the FC);
  • Government Forestry Plantation Development Project, funded under the HIPC initiative;
  • Community Forestry Management Project, funded by African Development Bank;
  •  Participatory Forest Management Project in the Transitional Zone of Ghana, funded by JICA;
  • FORUM Project, funded by GTZ;
  • Private Sector Plantation Development, partly supported by the Forest Plantation Development Fund established by the Ministry.

To date, the total area planted under the various approaches is approximately 81,000 ha and has provided employment for 46,058 people on full time base and 1,049,833 on part-time.

In addition, the programme has made significant achievement in the area of:

  •  Food production in the various project areas, thus providing food security for the nation
  • Securing water catchments areas, e.g Tano, Birim and Densu.

2. The Ministry is actively promoting the use of Bamboo and Rattan as an alternative and supplement to the wood deficit in the country.

In furtherance of this objective, the Ministry has trained 172 persons in management of bamboo natural stands harvesting and propagation in 4 communities. In addition, 159 persons have been trained in bamboo and rattan furniture, craft and construction skills and plans are in place to train more of such people to enhance the development of this project.

As part of the sensitisation programme under the project, an exhibition was mounted for the mining sector on the use of bamboo for land reclamation after mining operations have ceased. Another exhibition was held for District Chief Executives to sensitise them on the use of the bamboo as an alternative to timber for the construction of schools and manufacture of furniture.

3. In order to sustain community participation in the management of the resource, the Ministry has revised the benefit sharing arrangement of forest revenue from off reserves. The current sharing ratio is 60% for resource owners and 40% for the Forest Commission (resource manager) as against the reverse in the previous arrangement.

In addition, the Ministry has set up a Committee to review the benefit sharing arrangement of 40:60 of royalties accruing from forest reserves, that is, 40% to traditional authorities and 60% to Government.

4. The Ministry is encouraging the development of eco-tourism through public-private partnerships. The Mole, the Kakum and the Ankassa Resource areas have been advertised for interested entities to apply for operational licences. Similarly, a private company has won a bid for Shai-Hills Resource Centre tourist facility. Negotiations are ongoing to finalise the operational Agreement.

5. The Ministry is also implementing a ten-year Wildfire Management Project, to reduce the negative impact of bush fire on natural resource management and development. Even though the project implementation is on-going preliminary assessment by the Environmental Protection Agency indicates that wildfire menace is being reduced particularly in the pilot areas of the project. As part of the project component the Ministry together with other stakeholders have developed a National Wildfire Management Policy to provide an institutional framework and strategies to guide Wildfire prevention and control in Ghana . The policy document will be made available to the public hopefully before the end of this year.

6. Various alternative livelihood schemes to wean fringe communities off forest resources have been instituted by the Ministry. . An example is the disbursement of 2.5 million dollar Community Investment Fund (CIF) to over 5,255 beneficiaries under a grant arrangement with the Global Environmental Facility. Loans granted with low interest rates have stimulated economic activities in the areas of bee-keeping, grasscutter rearing, piggery, oil palm processing, soap making, cold stores businesses, sewing and bakery.


The Ministry, through its mining sub-sector Agencies, has initiated policy reforms and undertaken various strategic programmes and projects within the past twelve months. The following programmes and activities were undertaken.

Local Economic Development (LED) Or Alternative Livelihood Projects (ALP) In Mining Communities

Since minerals are depletable resources there is the need to have an alternative source of livelihood. The Ministry held consultations with the Chiefs and people of Himan, Nsuta-Mbeasi, Huni-Valley and Awodua in the Western Region to undertake an oil palm project for the benefit of these communities. The consultations ended with the chiefs agreeing to release land for the start of the project next year.

The Ministry has also been working with the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI), to develop non-mining skills such as fish farming, snail rearing, livestock and poultry farming, soap making, batik tye & dye, etc., in mining communities in Bontefufou, Tetrem, Esaase, Dumasi.

Reclamation of Mined Out Areas

The Ministry is undertaking studies in the Yakaso (35.7 ha) and Tontokrom (115 ha) in the Ashanti Region and at Adjakaa-Manso (134 ha) and Ataasi (29 ha) in the Western Region to reclaim land degraded through illegal mining activities. These areas will be planted with economic and citrus trees and handed over to the communities.

The rationale for such reclamation exercise is to demonstrate to communities that mined out areas can be reclaimed for economic use.

Industrial Minerals Development

Clay samples from Accra-Tema (Ashiama, Weija, Abokobi) were studied for their industrial uses. These were found to be suitable for industrial use in the manufacture of bricks and tiles. The results have been made available to interested entrepreneurs for the possibility of producing some of these items on commercial scale.

Engineering and Environmental Geology for Urban Planning of Accra-Tema and its environs .

Geological mapping and detailed ground investigations to determine coastal pollution and sanitation sites, and areas prone to flooding and urban erosion were completed. These are considered essential to the planning and developmental purposes.

Routine Monitoring of Seismic (Earthquake) Activities

The Ministry, through the Geological Survey Department, monitored earthquakes occurrences and used the results to help sensitiSe the public on how to mitigate the effects of an earthquake.

Relocation of illegal small scale miners (Galamsey)

The Ministry has adopted a policy to accommodate and support small scale mining within a legal framework. In view of this development, efforts have been made to identify suitable areas on pilot basis for illegal miners (Galamseyers) particularly those from Prestea. Three of such areas have been identified at Japa, Adjumadium, and Oguakrom and since June 2005 one thousand (1000) of illegal miners have been relocated at Japa and another 100 at Adjumadium. Other illegal miners are expected to move to Oguakrom in subsequent months. Efforts are also underway to carry out further geological work. The success of this exercise will help the Ministry replicate the resettlement of other illegal miners in suitable areas.

It is expected that this new initiative will lead to a better organisation, control and monitoring of small scale mining operations as is being done in Konongo and Bolgatanga. The increased production that will be derived from these small scale miners will be sold to the PMMC for value-addition. In the year 2004, production from small scale miners totalled 46,570 ounces of gold and 778,401 carats of diamonds.

The Government through the Ministry also provided financial assistance of 4.4 billion cedis to the small scale miners in Bolgatanga and Konongo.

Mining Sector Support Programme (MSSP)

The Ministry, with funding from the European Union (EU) is undertaking the Mining Sector Support Programme.

Activities being carried out under the programme are:

  • Airborne Geophysical Survey over the Volta River and Keta Basins and Geological Mapping of prioritized field sheets for the discovery of minerals leading to the diversification of the mineral production base of the country.
  • Environmental Impact Assessment and National Strategic Assessment Programme to measure the effect of past, current and future consequences of large scale mining operations in order to find appropriate solutions to them.
  • Mercury Pollution Abatement Project which seeks to find alternate gold processing methods for small scale gold miners to eliminate the use of mercury. This component when completed will eliminate the hazards that small scale miners are exposed to.

Review of Legal and Fiscal Regimes

The Ministry has facilitated the drafting of a new Minerals and Mining Bill based on international best practices, which will not only make the nation's mining sector internationally competitive, but also address other stakeholder interests. The Bill is currently before Parliament. Some of the stakeholders interests addressed include :

i. Relocation and Re-Settlement of Mining Communities

The Ministry will ensure that appropriate measures are taken by companies to comply strictly with the “room-for-room” policy in implementing their resettlement programmes taking into account their socio-cultural aspirations.

Where communities opt for relocation, the Ministry will ensure that market value rates are paid to beneficiaries.

ii. Compensation for use of land

In the area of compensation the Ministry has taken note of concerns raised and has therefore taken appropriate measures to address these concerns. Under the current Bill before Parliament, a more generous provision has been made whereby an owner or lawful occupier may be entitled to compensation for deprivation of use of land and not only for the destruction of crops.

Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources

Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources