The Ghana COCOBOD says it is still going ahead with processes towards the signing of this year’s syndicated loan scheduled for August.
According to the regulator of Ghana’s cocoa sub-sector, it is engaging all relevant stakeholders such as banks and traders through audiovisual conference calls to keep the process on track.
COCOBOD normally starts the syndicated processes by February every year.
There have been reports in recent times suggesting that cocoa farmers will be hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic as COCOBOD operations grind to a halt.
But speaking to some journalists, the Chief Executive of COCOBOD, Joseph Boahen Aidoo, said even though shipment of beans has been halted due to the closure of ports, the process of signing a deal with cocoa buyers has not stalled.
“The processes usually starts around February; and so this is the time we should be doing syndication. Of course, because of the challenge, things are not normal, and because of that, a number of interactions have been stalled”.
“But that doesn’t mean the windows are completely closed. As we speak, we are also doing a number of conference calls and we have rescheduled some of the meetings,” he added.
Mr. Boahen Aidoo explained that a team from COCOBOD would have had some meetings with buyers and bankers by now; but the ban on travel has curtailed such moves.
“There should have been some meetings outside Ghana; but because of the COVID-19 challenge, we cannot travel, so we are doing conference calls; and then we are also rescheduling the program of syndication. Maybe the timing may delay,” he stressed.