Fertile conditions nurturing smuggling of Ghana’s cocoa to Cote d’Ivoire

12:42, August 06, 2010      

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The Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research (ISSER) at the University of Ghana declared in Accra on Thursday that there were fertile conditions that nurtured the smuggling of Ghana’s cocoa to its neighbors, Cote d’Ivoire and Togo.

In a report issued in Accra on Thursday, the ISSER said that smuggling of cocoa beans across Ghana’s borders to neighboring countries, especially La Cote d’Ivoire, was expected to continue as long as price differential paid to farmers in the various countries lingered.

The ISSER report, “State of the Ghanaian Economy in 2009”, called for redoubled efforts to check the smuggling of cocoa, the main foreign exchange earner, otherwise it would cause a continues decline in the volumes of Ghana’s cocoa and thus reduce the country’s revenue from cocoa sales in 2010.

The report also called on government to continue to focus on improving domestic staples, especially roots and tubes, cereals and livestock.

It however hoped that with the commissioning of a new cocoa processing facility in 2009 in Kumasi, Ghana’s second largest city, the policy of processing 50 percent of cocoa beans locally by the end of 2010 was in the right direction.

“Agricultural sector grew fastest in 2009 with a growth rate of 6.2 percent, representing a 0.1 percentage increase over the rate of 2008,” the report stated.

The growth of the agric sector was due to the 41.4 percentage increase in the crop and livestock sector from 5.8 percent in 2008 to 8.2 percent in 2009.

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