Parliament Approbate A 1.3 Billion US Dollar Syndicated Loan For Cocobod For 2020/21 Cocoa Purchase
By: Joe Obeng Yeboah
Approval has been given by the Parliament of Ghana for the Ghana Cocoa Board to access an amount of 1.3 billion US Dollar loan from a Consortium of Banks and Financial Institutions for the purchase of cocoa beans during the 2020/21 Cocoa crop season.
During the presentation of his report to Parliament, the Chairman of the Finance Committee, Dr. Mark Assibey-Yeboah explained that the Trade Finance Facility was to enable Cocobod to raise funds for the purchase of cocoa beans from Licensed Buying Companies (LBC's) during the cocoa crop season which would soon take off in October, 2020.
He added that a 900,000 metric tonnes of cocoa production is expected during the 2020/21 cocoa crop season, noting that the projection figure was based on the trend of cocoa production over the past years, coupled with good agronomic practices being implemented by Cocobod.
According to Dr. Assibey- Yeboah, the loan, which would be in two tranches of 650 million US Dollars
in October and November 2020 to February 2021 would be expended, based on the operational needs of Cocobod.
"The share of net FOB involves the payment to farmers, buyers' margin,internal marketing operations (storage/shipping operations), disinfection/grading and sealing cost,other costs/ scale and phytosanitary inspection."
Speaking from the Minority side, the Member of Parliament for Adaklu, Mr. Governs Kwame Agbodza implored the Government to pay critical attention to the cocoa sector, since it is the health and backbone of Ghana's economy, adding that, if the same effort applied to the oil sector is applied to the Cocoa sector, Ghana would be better off.
He advised the Government to do everything possible to match cocoa production level with monies being borrowed, in order to avoid payment being made a burden on the nation.