Weekly Brief 16/06

Cameroon Attacks

Photo: AlJareeza
  • Suspected Boko Haram fighters in northern Cameroon killed dozens of people over the weekend, including soldiers and civilians – at least 37 have been confirmed dead. 
  • Military positions on Darak, an island near Lake Chad in Cameroon’s Far North region were attacked
  • Cameroon’s armed forces are also dealing with an armed revolt by separatists in two English-speaking regions in the west of the country. There is an ongoing battle between the minority English-speaking and majority French-speaking regions.

    Read more here

Made in Rwanda

Kigali, Rwanda
  • Rwanda witnessed a 36% drop in its trade deficit (the difference between its imports and exports) since 2015 thanks to the Made-in-Rwanda policy that has increased the country’s industrial output
  • Launched in 2015 “Made-in-Rwanda” aims to recapture parts of the Rwandan market from imports while improving the competitiveness of Rwandan exports globally
  • As part of this strategy, Rwanda this year will totally ban imports of Western hand-me-downs in a bid to boost its own domestic textiles industry
  • In the first two years since the launch of “Made-in-Rwanda,” the government said total export receipts increased from $559 million in 2015 to $944 million in 2017.
  • Many other African economies have taken on similar initiatives to boost domestic exports and reduce over-reliance on imports. 

    Read more here

Focus: Cocoa Producers Set Price Floor

What’s going on?

  • Cocoa buyers and processors met in Accra this week and agreed to a floor price (minimum price) for beans at $2,600 per ton proposed by top producers Ivory Coast and Ghana
  • Together, Ivory Coast and Ghana account for about 60% of global cocoa supply. 
  • The countries are seeking to exert more influence over the market to ensure their farmers and economies derive more benefit from the industry – Ghanaian and Ivorian farmers earned only about 5.5% of the global chocolate industry worth more than $100 billion in 2015.

What does this mean?

  • This means that Ghana and Ivory Coast will not accept anything less than $2,600 per ton for their cocoa beans.
  • They have long been at the mercy of traders who set cocoa prices thousands of miles away in London and New York.
  • They are also seeking to invest in scientific research to improve crops and in marketing and processing in order to profit more from the supply chain.

Why you should care

  • The world’s largest cocoa producers are finally taking advantage of their negotiating powers and coordinating efforts to profit more from such a lucrative industry.
  • There have been concerns however that a $2,600 minimum price would result in overproduction which could lead to further losses and price falls in the long run.

    Read more here


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