Reducing cocoa price will force farmers to sell lands to illegal miners

The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) has said it will not heed to the advice of the International Monetary Fund to reduce the price of cocoa to farmers.

Reducing cocoa price will force farmers to sell lands to illegal miners

According to the Chief Executive Officer of COCOBOD, Joseph Boahen Aidoo, the move will increase illegal mining (galamsey) in the country.

His aide, Mr Fiifi Boafo, said implementing the IMF's advice will force cocoa farmers to sell their lands to galamseyers.

“Reducing price of cocoa will become an incentive for farmers to sell farmlands to illegal miners,” he told Radio Ghana.

“A large sum, the farmers may release their lands to the galamseyers to operate. For us as a country, I don’t think it’s in our interest to lets farmers lease their land to galamsey, he insisted.

The IMF has admonished the Ghanaian government to adjust the producer price of cocoa to reflect changes in international cocoa prices.

The IMF explained that the downward adjustment had become necessary because the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) was dealing with a funding gap of GHC1billion due to the government’s inability to reduce producer prices paid to cocoa farmers at a time global prices of the crop had been falling.

This was contained in the seventh and eighth review documents under the recently concluded the External Credit Facility (ECF) Programme.

The report indicated that the adjustment was necessary to save COCOBOD from the expanding financing gap.

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