The European Union (EU) has threatened to impose sanctions on cocoa exports from Ghana and Ivory Coast to its member countries.
This is according to Deputy Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of COCOBOD, Dr. Emmanuel Agyeman Dwomoh.
Making the disclosure at the National Consultative Dialogue on Small Scale Mining, Dr Dwomoh noted the threat by the EU is as a result of the latter’s belief that cocoa farming is engendering deforestation in the country.
“When you take the satellite images, you will see those places in red. The EU thinks that all those places are red because cocoa is causing land degradation [in Ghana], meanwhile, it is as a result of the galamsey activities.”
“And so as we speak, EU is threatening to ban Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire, to impose restrictions on the importation of cocoa from Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire to their ports,” stated Dr Dwomoh.
Data made available by COCOBOD indicate that Ghana exports 80 percent of its cocoa into the EU market.
Speaking at the national dialogue, Dr Dwomoh expressed worry over the potential impact the artisanal illegal mining (galamsey) menace will have on the finances of the country and the cocoa sector.
“The impact of these mining activities on cocoa production is enormous. There is crop loss, reduction of crop yield and income, loss of vegetation, the fertility of the crop soil is destroyed and there’s also an early dropping of immature pods, as a result of the chemicals that they use,” he averred
disclosing the negative impact of galamsey on the yield of the cash crop and the gains made so far by COCOBOD and government.