COCOBOD has signed an agreement for a US$1.5 billion syndicated loan facility for the 2021/22 cocoa crop season.
The latest loan facility of USD 1.5 billion provided by a Consortium of 28 banks has an interest rate plus libor of 1.10%, and is repayable in equal installments for seven (7) calendar months beginning February to August 2022.
The loan is projected to help purchase about 600,000 metric tonnes of cocoa for the season under consideration.
The signing ceremony which took place in Accra at the Headquarters of Standard Chattered Bank of Ghana was attended in-person and via video-conferencing by officials from COCOBOD, government and representatives of the financial institutions who participated in this year's syndication.
Speaking at the ceremony, Chief Executive of COCOBOD, Joseph Boahen Aidoo who joined via zoom, expressed his gratitude to the banks for their trust in Ghana's cocoa industry and assured that the loan will be used for its intended purposes and paid on schedule. He further mentioned that cocoa beans purchased for the 2020/21 season stood at record high.
" The support we have received from our financial partners has been very consistent and enormous. Management of COCOBOD sincerely appreciates your unflinching commitment in these difficult times," he said.
" Through our continued implementation of the productivity enhancement programs, cocoa beans purchased for the 2020/21 crop year, stood at 1.45 metric Tonnes. The future of Ghana's Cocoa sector is indeed blissful," he noted.
Minister of Food and Agriculture, Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto assured stakeholders that farmers will be paid promptly for their produce.
"We Intend to strictly use this money for the intended purpose, that is, ensuring prompt payment of farmers for their produce at the point of sale."
He added, "We are all aware that Ghana's Economy depends heavily on the cocoa industry. We will not take our attention from policies that will help develop the cocoa industry and make it more attractive to all stakeholders"
Since the 1992/93 crop season, COCOBOD has consistently and successfully, through the pre-export syndicated finance facility, obtained a receivables-backed syndicated loan each year to finance its cocoa purchases.
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