Ghana To Launch $600 Million Syndicated Loan For Boosting Cocoa Production, Local Processing And Consumption
Ghana Cocoa Board, COCOBOD, is set to launch a US$600 million Syndicated Loan Facility tomorrow, 23rd June 2020, to enhance crop production and also invest in local processing and consumption efforts.
The African Development Bank (AfDB), Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the Development Bank of South Africa (DBSA) are contributing to funding for the cocoa syndicated loan.
Others are Cassa Depositi e Prestiti Spa (CDP), Credit Suisse AG and the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Limited.
The ceremony in Accra, to officially launch the loan facility signed with some development finance institutions, is set to be witnessed by officials of participating organisations, physically and virtually.
COCOBOD says “the funds will be applied to strengthen the local cocoa industry” cutting across the entire domestic value chain from beans production to processing.
“This will in turn aid the cocoa authority in its effort to achieve SDG Goals 1 (no poverty), 8 (decent work and economic growth) and 12 (responsible consumption and production)”, a statement by the Ghana cocoa regulator partly noted.
Cocobod in November 2019 successfully signed a $600 million Africa Development Bank credit facility to finance crucial projects aimed at boosting the West African country’s cocoa sector.
Key components under the facility include rehabilitation of moribund cocoa farms, irrigation projects, warehousing, consumption promotion, and processing and value addition to the cocoa beans.
Disbursement of $600m AfDB Facility
Ahead of final processes for the disbursement of the facility, a delegation of Executive Directors from the continental development finance agency, AfDB, on Thursday held a closed-door meeting with the management of COCOBOD at its headquarters, Cocoa House, in Accra.
Local Processing Capacity Crucial
The Chief Executive of Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), Joseph Boahen Aidoo said in a press release, Cocobod and government remain committed to the goal to domestically process up to 50 per cent of cocoa produce.
Mr Aidoo explained, “this is crucial for the long-term sustainability of Ghana’s cocoa sector, as a whole, and again for the country to increase its share of the multi-billion-dollar global cocoa and chocolate market.”
The Cocobod chief noted that access to capital has historically been a major challenge for the domestic cocoa processing industry, as such the AfDB facility was crucial to resolve that challenge.
He assured COCOBOD will prudently and efficiently apply the loan facility to the intended purposes to ensure the sustainable growth of Ghana’s cocoa industry.
Ghana’s current installed capacity for domestic cocoa processing is 450,000 tonnes.
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