ACA Calls for Ghanaian Government Regulation Reiterated by Members

ACA’s ongoing policy advocacy initiative for favorable government policies to regulate the cashew industry in Ghana has been reiterated by a powerful private sector cashew actor.  On July 18th, Ghanaweb.com and the Business and Financial Times (B&FT) published a press statement from USIBRAS Ghana Limited, an long standing ACA member and one of the largest cashew processing company from Brazil in West Africa, calling for greater support to the country’s cashew processors who are struggling for adequate raw seed supplies.

ACA believes that policy reforms should be put in place by the Ghanaian government that benefit stakeholders across the value chain and further value-addition for industry sustainabilityImproving the access of raw cashew nuts to domestic cashew processing firms will ensure the growth of the entire Ghanaian cashew sector.  According to Mr. Tarciso Falcao, Operations Director of USIBRAS Ghana Limited: “We need prompt policies on the taxation of raw cashew nut exports, the establishment of a two months export window for raw cashew nuts, a minimum price for farmers per season and a long-term plan for the sustainable development of a flourishing cashew sector.”  Through direct advocacy and sharing regional/international best practices, ACA continues to fight for the conditions critical to a truly competitive African cashew industry.

Without the necessary regulations allowing local processors preferential access to domestic product, USIBRAS Ghana Limited has been compelled to import 5,000 metric tons (MT) of raw cashew nuts from Guinea Bissau.  With aid from the ACA Business Services department, the company was able to procure a first ship-load of raw cashew nuts from Guinea-Bissau, and is expecting the second shipment reaching Ghanaian shores this week.  The USIBRAS factory, which has an installed processing capacity of 30,000 MT per year, is currently operating on only 6,000 MT per year due to domestic shortages in raw materials.  The potential employment, taxes and revenue gains via increased domestic processing can strengthen the Ghanaian economy via value-added export revenues.  According to Alliance and B&FT, “if the installed processing capacity [of Ghana] is used to its fullest potential of 65,000 MT, over US$ 110 million in value-added export revenues, some 13,000 jobs will be created with an aggregated wage of GHS 39,000,000 for women in rural areas excluding middle and top management of the factory.”

To read the published story please click: http://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/business/5-000m-t-of-raw-cashew-nuts-imported-from-Guinea-Bissau-456149