From Ayodele Samuel, Lagos
The Federal Government is intensifying the implementation of expansion projects for cocoa processing and manufacturing in order to claim a greater share of the annual $200bn global market for finished goods made from cocoa.
The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga, at the summit on Cocoa Value Addition in Nigeria said with the repositioning, Nigeria would extract immense value out of the cocoa industry.
Aganga said, “The total global value of exporting raw cocoa is approximately $10 billion a year; the total value from chocolates alone, all made from cocoa, is over $100 billion a year, while the total value of all finished goods made from cocoa is estimated to be as high as $200 billion a year, all drawing from the same $10 billion raw cocoa beans produced.
“With the situation today, about 76 per cent of total cocoa produced is from Africa, but less than five per cent of the wealth in the value chain is retained here. After many decades of dominating cocoa production, it is worrying that we still remain price takers, and capture so little value. This is not right, and this is what we have set out to change”.
He said with the expansion of cocoa processing and manufacturing capacity, Government was setto retain more of the value of the Cocoa industry in Nigeria, create jobs and wealth for citizens and generate income for government.
The minister noted that the partnership between his Ministry, the Ministry of Agriculture and Organised Private Sector (OPS) was a very good evidence of President Goodluck Jonathan’s unwavering commitment to pushing the frontiers of economic development and returning Nigeria to the heights of its glory in the cocoa industry.
He said, “This event is a unique collaboration between three parties – the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade, and Investment; Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development; and the Organised Private sector in the Nigerian Cocoa industry. “This is where future generations of Nigeria will remember that,
together, we turned the course of the Nigerian Cocoa industry. We must, however, develop a bold vision for the Nigerian Cocoa value chain, which will define a clear road map with roles for all stakeholders.”
Speaking at the event, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina, said his Ministry was working with the Ministry of Industry, trade and Investment on a ministerial memo on value chain that would unlock the cocoa sector.
He said the memo would be presented to the Federal Executive Council, adding that Government had provided 1.4 million pods of high breed cocoa to farmers, free of charge, within two years. This, he said, had increased cocoa output from 250,000 to 300,000.