Permanent Headquarters of Ghana-Cote d’Ivoire Cocoa Initiative commissioned in Accra

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo Thursday commissioned the Permanent Headquarters of the Cote d’Ivoire-Ghana Cocoa Initiative (CIGCI) Secretariat building in Accra.

The historic event represents a key milestone in the two West African countries’ cooperation efforts to improve the cocoa industry’s sustainability and efficiency.

At a ceremony attended by Ivorian Prime Minister Mr Robert Beugre’ Mamber and his delegation, as well as sector stakeholders, President Akufo-Addo called for stronger collaboration among African cocoa-producing countries to deal with emerging challenges posed by the recent increase in global cocoa prices.

He emphasised the pivotal role of cocoa in the economies of both countries and the need for concerted efforts to address shared challenges facing the industry, stating that such coordination was necessary to address those difficulties proactively.

‘In light of recent regulations governing cocoa supply, especially to the European Union, collaborative efforts between Ghana and
Cote d’Ivoire are essential to establish unified positions and safeguard the interests of our farmers.

‘It is imperative for this collaboration to address proactively these challenges, reinforcing the need for cohesive action. We anticipate that this collective initiative will pioneer the way forward for the cocoa industry,’ he emphasised.

The President reaffirmed Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire’s commitment to strengthening their cocoa cooperation.

He said the initiative was a testament to the enduring bond between Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire and the beginning of a new chapter in the history of the African cocoa industry

President Akufo-Addo stated that the siting of the initiative’s headquarters in Accra represented not only what regional unity and cooperation could achieve, but also the two countries’ shared aspiration for a prosperous cocoa economy.

‘This beautiful edifice does not only signify what regional unity and cooperation can achieve. it also represents our shared aspiration for a prosperous cocoa econom
y, one that is modernised and industrialised and delivers wealth to the millions oof hardworking cocoa farmers and producers in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire.

‘We are through this cooperation creating the opportunity to revolutionize the cocoa supply chain for the delivery of greater value to our economies,’ he said

The President stated that the current international cocoa market justified the two countries’ course of action, which between them are responsible for 65 percent of global cocoa output and are at the center of the international cocoa trade.

He noted that with the current peak in market prices, a new set of obstacles had emerged, forcing a rethink of previous strategies to sustain or avoid price drops.

President Akufo-Addo remarked that the two countries’ commitment to collective action to achieve prosperity for all in Africa remained unwavering.

He emphasized that growth was dependent on a concerted effort to industrialize and promote fair trade both within and outside of Africa.

The President sai
d that the need for agro-industrialisation was shifting the dynamics of the agricultural sector, and that ‘the cocoa sector in Ghana in particular was witnessing the impact of these changes.’

He said the volume and value of domestic processing had increased, with the overall installed processing capacity jumping to more than 50 per cent of national output, and the total value of exported secondary goods now exceeding $800 million.

‘We are on the trajectory of a modern, prosperous, and a private sector-driven economy anchored on the vision of a Ghana beyond aid. This vision we hope to achieve through a digitalisation to drive efficiency, improve productivity, accelerate access to government services, and improve the ease of doing business,’ he said.

Mr Assanvo, the Executive Secretary of CIGCI, said the initiative had helped to reaffirm the goal of placing the producer back at the heart of the cocoa value chain.

He said the attainment of the Living income differential had survived attacks and the attempts
to seek retribution, and the idea had now become an example for the whole world.

Dr Bryan Acheampong, Minister for Agriculture, said the new office underscored the two countries’ shared objective of advancing cooperation for mutual benefit.

He said that CIGCI was now a well-recognised visible player in the cocoa sector, adding that ‘With acknowledged contributions on a range of topics, which include price traceability, regulations and market outlook.’

Mr. Joseph Boahen Aidoo, Chief Executive of the Ghana Cocoa Board, disclosed that the secretariat building was donated by the Ghanaian government as part of its commitment to the initiative’s success.

Source: Ghana News Agency