CMC Managing Director Addresses 2020/2021 Freight Negotiation Conference
Story: Joe Obeng Yeboah
The Managing Director of Cocoa Marketing Company (Gh) Ltd, Mr. Vincent Okyere Akomeah has hinted that Ghana cocoa export for the 2020/2021 cocoa season is anticipated to be about 700,000 tonnes.
"'We therefore expect a greater volume of about 75% shipment by the end of February 2021''.
He was delivering the welcome address during the 2020/2021 Freight Negotiation Conference held at the Ghana Shippers' Authority House in Accra.
The conference was historically, the second to be held in Ghana in sixteen (16) years.
Mr. Akomeah revealed that in the coming season, (2020/2021),
CMC will be operating from the seven (7) terminal centres of Armajaro shed, Commodity Village Terminal, (near Cargil Ghana, at the Free Zone area), Adwumapa Main and Adwumapa Annex, Global Annex and the CMC terminal at Community Three, (3) all in Tema.
In Takoradi, he said, CMC will be operating from the Kejebril and Apowa Terminals, whilst operation in Kumasi will be done in Kaase and Asokwa, explaining
that all terminals are fully equipped with reach stackers and forklifts.
He noted that the coming season would be the period Cocoa Marketing Company will rely on the utmost co-operation of Shipping Lines, especially, with reliable ETA (expected time of arrival) vessels and availability and delivery of good Food Grade containers to CMC's terminals.
According to him,CMC shipped slightly over 500,000 tonnes of cocoa during the 2019/2020 cocoa season, adding that, it is significant to note that 52% out of this volume was shipped from Takoradi, 42% from Tema and 6% from Kumasi.
Mr. Okyere Akomeah mentioned that the shipment statistics are a reflection of the fact that 45% of the total coca production in Ghana during the last cocoa season,(2019/2020 came from the Western Region, albeit only two or three shipping lines called on Takoradi, despite the Region being the cocoa shipment action spot.
"'We are therefore encouraging as many Shipping Lines as possible to avail themselves to load cocoa from Takoradi.
We are assuring you of incentives like greater volumes and free empty container terminal at Kejebril. We are taking the issue of port tariff and charges with GPHA for vessels picking cocoa from Takoradi, and you will be informed about the outcome".
Notwithstanding the successes chalked during the last cocoa season, Mr. Okyere Akomeah minced no words in bringing to the fore, problems encountered.
"We had to reopen containers and change desicants more often this year as a result of delay in expected time of arrival (ETA) of vessels. There were inadequate containers to stuff cocoa from carriers and sometimes, delay in the release of bill of lading".
Quite apart from such problems, the worried Managing Director of CMC added that, during the season, it was difficult to get confirmation of vessels' sailing dates and the exact containers that were loaded on board from some carriers for documentation purposes, adding that these challenges came from some of the container Shipping Lines.
He warned that in the coming season, for the bulk carriers, CMC will ensure that the FCC rule on vessels which are not above fifteen (15) years of age will be "strictly enforced".
Mr. Okyere Akomeah thanked participants for having worked with CMC during the just ended cocoa season and was full of optimism that the 2020/2021 cocoa season and beyond will be more successful and of mutual benefit to CMC and its business partners.