President Alassane Ouattara of Ivory Coast on Wednesday hailed the country’s agricultural sector for averaging economic growth by 9 per cent.
Ouattara told an international agriculture conference in Abidjan that agriculture brought in a record cocoa crop of 2 million tonnes of beans within three weeks in the ongoing harvest season.
“From 2012 to 2016 we have averaged economic growth by 9 per cent thanks to our agricultural sector,” Ouattara said.
He also said production in neighbouring Ghana, the world’s number two grower, had reached 1 million tonnes this season, on par with its 2010/11 record crop.
The figure is higher than Reuters’ most recent exporter estimate, which placed this season’s port arrivals at 1,966,000 tonnes by Sept. 3, up nearly 35 per cent, compared to the same period of the previous crop.
World cocoa prices have plunged this year as bumper crops in most major producer countries created a supply glut.
The International Cocoa Organization forecasts a global surplus of 371,000 tonnes this season.
Ivory Coast and Ghana have held joint meetings aimed at harmonising cocoa production and marketing in an attempt to boost their influence over the New York and London markets.