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Ghana Is Working Towards Processing of Cocoa for Production of Chocolate

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says Ghana is working towards processing more of its cocoa, especially in the production of chocolate.

He said the country would no longer depend on the production and export of raw materials, including cocoa beans, but rather, focus on processing the raw materials. “We believe there can be no future prosperity for the Ghanaian people, in the short, medium or long term, if we continue to maintain economic structures that are dependent on the production and export of raw materials,” he said.

He, thus, reiterated the government’s commitment to add value to the country’s raw materials, industrialise and enhance agricultural productivity.

“This is the best way we can put Ghana at the high end of the value chain in the global market place, and create jobs for the teeming masses of Ghanaians,” he said

President Akufo-Addo said this last Friday when he delivered a statement at the Federal Assembly of the Swiss Confederation, in Bern, Switzerland, as part of a two-day State Visit to that country, the first in 60 years by a Head of State from sub-Saharan Africa.

The President urged Swiss investors to take advantage of Ghana’s unique position as host of the AfCFTA Secretariat to set up joint venture enterprises in the country and, thereby, access the huge market that the free trade area presents.

He said since assuming office in January 2017, his government had put in place a number of measures aimed at attracting investment to Ghana and stimulating the growth of the private sector.

“We have succeeded, over the last three years, in ensuring that all our macroeconomic indices are pointing in the right direction; cut our fiscal deficit; introduced a monetary policy that is stabilising the currency and reducing significantly the cost of borrowing; and have introduced a raft of tax cuts which are bringing relief to and encouraging businesses,” President Akufo-Addo said.

These interventions, he explained, had led to Ghana recording an annual GDP average growth rate of seven per cent since 2017, making Ghana, consistently, one of the world’s fastest-growing economies during the period. “We have one of the most business-friendly economies in Africa, evidenced in our status as the largest recipient of foreign direct investment in West Africa,” the President said.

Additionally, President Akufo-Addo told members of the Federal Council that Ghana had also been selected to host the Secretariat of the African Continental Free Trade Area, a market of some 1.2 billion people, with a combined GDP of US$3 trillion.

Describing it as “the world’s largest free trade area since the formation of the World Trade Organisation”, he stressed that “our goal is to make Ghana the hub of trade in Africa.”

President Akufo-Addo reassured members of the Federal Assembly that Ghana was fully committed to a democratic present and future, where respect for individual liberties and human rights, the rule of law and the principles of democratic accountability were at the core of the country’s body politic.

“Ghana stands shoulder to shoulder with Switzerland in our joint determination to promote and protect human rights across the globe,” he added.

The President continued, “I am hopeful that, as we shape the future of Ghana, and position Ghanaian enterprises to compete effectively on the world stage, we have friends, such as the Swiss Confederation, to support us in this objective. We are determined in Ghana to ensure that succeeding generations of Ghanaians do not become victims or pawns of the international economic order, but her beneficiaries.”

Describing the relations between Ghana and Switzerland as excellent, the President paid tribute to the work undertaken by the Basel Missionaries, who arrived in the then Gold Coast to undertake evangelical work.

The missionaries pioneered the establishment of educational and health institutions across the country; were also responsible for the translation of the Bible from English into some Ghanaian languages, he said.

“I have also personally benefitted from these very good relations because the first European Head of State to visit Ghana, when I assumed office as the fifth President of Ghana’s 4th Republic, on January 7, 2017, was your 91st President, Her Excellency Mrs Doris Leuthard,” he added.

Source : GT

QCC (COCOBOD) Gets First Quality Accreditations Standard in West Africa.

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Government of Ghana, Government of Switzerland and Quality Control Company Limited (QCC) on Tuesday 24th September launch a new country programme to improve trade quality and standards of cashew, oil palm and cocoa exports in Accra at the Swiss Spirit Alisa Hotel.

The Global Quality and Standards Programme (GQSP) is an innovative programme developed by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and UNIDO to address country-specific quality and standards compliance capacity challenges in partner countries to facilitate market access for SMEs in selected value chains. Today’s launch has made Ghana achieved yet another major milestone in cementing its position as the world’s second-largest producer of cocoa beans.

In addition to the launch of the program today, UNIDO also accredited QCC with two quality certificates meant for cocoa testing and inspection :

  1. ISO IEC 17020
  2. ISO IEC 17025.

Speaking at the ceremony, Dr. Ebenezer Owusu, Chairman of the Board of Quantity Control Company, said COCOBOD was the first organization to attain the accreditations in the West African Sub-region.

Swiss Ambassador to Ghana, Phillip Stalder, congratulated COCOBOD, saying these accreditations are achievements which mark a significant milestone for the Ghanaian cocoa industry.

He expressed the belief that with appropriate investment, the Ghanaian cocoa sector can do much better in the future.

He added that Switzerland will continue to support the Ghanaian cocoa industry.

Managing Director of QCC, Samuel Maxwell Nana Kakari Addo, outlined some benefits of the accreditations.

He stated it will lead to timely documentation of inspection data, adding that the accreditations have assured the global market of premium quality cocoa from Ghana.

Source: ISD

COCOBOD, China signs agreement for establishment of Cocoa processing factory in Sefwi-Wiawso

The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) has signed an agreement with the China General Technology (Group) Holding (Genertec) for the establishment of a cocoa processing factory in Ghana.The factory, which will be located at Sefwi-Wiawso in the Western North Region will be operated by COCOBOD and Genertec through a Public Private Partnership (PPP).Implementation of the plan for the construction of the cocoa processing factory will involve the China International Development Operating Agency, with funding from the China Development Bank (CDB) and the Sino-African Fund.

The project holds great potential to contribute significantly to the improvement of the Ghanaian economy, and particularly, for the local economy of the Sefwi-Wiawso area, said the Chief Executive of COCOBOD, Hon Joseph Boahen Aidoo, in his address to the Chinese delegation led by the country’s Ambassador to Ghana, Mr Zhou Wang. The signing ceremony took place at the Cocoa House in Accra.

The project, Hon. Aidoo added, also has the potential to grant Ghana access to the huge Chinese market of well over a billion people. There lies a unique opportunity to reach several-million consumers of cocoa made and processed in Ghana.

“This is a project that is going to benefit both countries,” he said with some glee. “It is going to be of mutual benefit; a win-win situation. Ghana will benefit and of course, China will as well benefit.”

Hon. Aidoo said the project will also aid in COCOBOD’s drive towards increasing local consumption and more importantly, it fits into the agenda of the present government, that Ghana should increase its share of the USD$ 100 billion global cocoa industry through value addition to cocoa beans.

“It is a matter of taking a bigger part of the global value chain, worth over USD$ 100 billion annually. Once the comprehensive feasibility studies are completed, we are looking forward to the commencement of the project.”

On his part, Mr Tan Xinghui, the Vice President of Genertec said the company already has some foothold in the Ghanaian cocoa sector spanning some 15 years, however, the establishment of the cocoa processing plant commences a new model of corporation between Ghana and China.

Although, China has invested in other sectors of Ghana, they are yet looking for other opportunities where the two countries can cooperate for mutual profit and a deepening of relations.

“We regard Ghana as the regional hub”, Mr Tan Xinghui added. “We believe that our portfolio in Ghana is not yet enough, so, basically we are looking forward to expanding our investment here in Ghana and that is why we are here today.”

The Chairman of the Board of Directors of COCOBOD, Mr. Hackman Owusu Agyeman, was grateful for the co-operation and was hopeful that the project will commence in due time to achieve the objective of expanding the consumption of cocoa in the country.

He was positive that the mutual relationship between the two countries will be further strengthened.

SOURCE : BestNewsGH.com and www.facebook.com/jbaidooofficial/

EU backs cocoa price rise to make production more sustainable

Higher prices are needed to ensure cocoa production becomes more sustainable, a senior European Union official said on Tuesday, backing plans by top growers Ivory Coast and Ghana to levy a “living income differential” on sales.

“Ivory Coast and Ghana can count on the EU in their price floor initiative,” Regis Meritan of the trading bloc’s directorate-general for International Cooperation and Development told Reuters on the sidelines of a meeting organised by the International Cocoa Organization (ICCO).

 

The West African neighbours, who together produce two-thirds of the world’s cocoa, imposed a fixed “living income differential” of $400 a tonne in July on all cocoa sales for the 2020/21 season.

The move, a bid to ease pervasive farmer poverty, child labour and deforestation, was a major overhaul in how cocoa is priced globally.

“This initiative affects the price and we are convinced that without a significant increase in price we will not be able to change the paradigm,” Meritan, team leader on rural development, food security and nutrition, said.

Meritan said it would not be a problem for chocolate makers to pay more for cocoa as long as their competitors also faced higher costs. Major chocolate makers include Barry Callebaut AG , Mondelez International Inc and Nestle SA .

“If they all pay together more…the one who will ultimately pay more is the consumer,” he said.

Meritan welcomed the ongoing dialogue on the pricing scheme involving traders, producing countries and chocolate makers.

“Two years ago in 2017 in Brussels it was impossible with the industry to talk about the price and on the side of the producing countries it was not easy to make them say that if the price was low, it was because there was too much cocoa on the market,” he said.

“Today we are in a much healthier discussion.”

SOURCE : REUTERS