Ghana And Ivory Coast Agree Modalities For Cocoa Cooperation
Top officials of Ghana Cocoa Board and the Conseil du Cafe-Cacao of Ivory Coast are working out modalities for the implementation of the 2018 Abidjan Declaration at an ongoing summit in Abidjan.
The summit, being held in the Caistab Building in Abidjan-plateau, is expected to come out with a clear roadmap for the implementation of the strategic plan for the Abidjan Declaration on cocoa cooperation agreed between the two West African countries responsible for 60% of global cocoa output.
In March 2018, Ghana and Ivory Coast adopted the Abidjan Declaration as a joint response to the harsh and negative impact of falling international market prices for cocoa on millions of their farmers and the economies of the two world cocoa giants.
Delivering a communiqué, after the initial consultative meeting between the Presidents of Ghana and Ivory Coast on 26th March 2018, Ghana’s Trade Minister, Alan Kyerematen, stated that the Declaration aimed at “better defending the interests of cocoa producers, as well as the economies of both countries.”
He noted, President Akufo-Addo of Ghana and his Ivorian counterpart, President Alassane Ouattara, re-affirmed their commitment to define a better, common strategy and a sustainable solution for the improvement of prices for cocoa producers, in their respective countries.
“They also committed themselves to harmonizing their cocoa marketing policies, and agreed to announce, every year, in a concomitant manner, and before the beginning of the campaign, the price to cocoa producers”, he added.
The Abidjan Declaration would also see to deeper collaboration, in the field of scientific research for the production of resilient cocoa seedlings, the improvement of plant varieties, and also to adopt and implement a regional programme to fight against the swollen shoot disease.
The declaration on cocoa cooperation is also hoped to facilitate the local processing a larger chunk of the produce of Ghana and Ivory Coast, leveraging the resources of the African private sector.
Presidents Akufo-Addo and Ouattara in the 2018 cocoa pact also reaffirmed their commitment to promote jointly the consumption of cocoa locally, in the ECOWAS subregion, while also targeting emerging markets with value added products.
The working sessions underway in Abidjan-plateau, since Monday May 20, 2019 is being attended by a high-powered Ghana Cocoa Board delegation led by the Chief Executive, Joseph Boahen Aidoo.
Mr Aidoo recently made global news headlines when he rejected claims that cocoa production in Ghana was responsible for deforestation, prior to which he had also refused an IMF advice for Ghana to slash cocoa producer price to its farmers.
Last week, Bloomberg News hinted of plans by Ghana and Ivory Coast to summon international cocoa buyers and processors to discuss proposals for the involvement of the duo in the pricing of the international commodity.
Meanwhile, Ghana has been exploring export markets in Asia for its locally processed and value-added cocoa products.
This week a delegation led by the country’s Minister of Agriculture, Dr Owusu Afriyie-Akoto, participated in the 2019 Tea Expo happening in Hangzhou, China, where Ghanaian chocolates and cocoa products reported to be a toast of attendees.
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