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Business News Mon, 4 Nov 2019

$600m stimulus package for cocoa sector

Cocobod is to receive a 600 million-dollar capital injection to raise the country's cocoa production level to 1.5 million tonnes.

Ghana now produces 850,000 tonnes, making it the second-highest producer of the crop globally, after Cote d' Ivoire.

Mr Joseph Boahen Aidoo, who announced this said the capital injection was coming through a loan from the African Development Bank (AfDB).

Cabinet has okayed it and it is awaiting parliamentary approval.

He was speaking at a media briefing at the Peduase Lodge in the Eastern Region.

This is the first time that Ghana is taking a medium to long term financing for Cocobod.

Mr. Boahen Aidoo explained that the loan agreement was for a seven-year development programme to transform the cocoa sector - production and processing in the country.

He said 140 million dollars of the facility would be used to eradicate the swollen shoot disease while 82.7 million would go into the planting of new cocoa trees.

"We will also commit 68 million of the facility to hand pollination and pruning practices, 50 million for warehousing, cocoa farmer electronic database, and 200 million into processing and value addition.

He said by the seventh year, the project would have been fully implemented to move the production capacity to the targeted 1.5 million tonnes.

Ghana and Cote d' Ivoire, the CEO added, had been able to implement the Living Income Differential policy, something that would aid the pair to decide the purchasing power of their cocoa on the international market.

Source: ghananewsagency.org
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