Ghana: Building Alliances for Action in Cocoa from bean to bar (NTF V)
In September 2021, The Government of the Netherlands and the International Trade Centre (ITC) signed a four-year partnership agreement aimed at enhancing the trade competitiveness in selected African countries, through the strengthening of digital and agribusiness services and especially the connection between the two.
As part of the Netherlands Trust Fund (NTF) V Programme, in Ghana, ITC will implement a value chain development project with the objective of improving the competitiveness and livelihood of farmers and agribusiness MSMEs in the cocoa and associated crops sector with a crosscutting focus on digitalization.
Through the project, ITC aims to promote more efficient and sustainable agribusiness and support services that will lead to increased trade, better incomes and livelihoods opportunities especially for the smallholder cocoa farmers.
The project will explore digital solutions and related services to overcome the negative effects of agribusiness value chains disruption brought by Covid-19, globally as well as locally, such as lack of agricultural inputs, increase in price of raw material, decrease in international demand (during the lockdown period) and the consequent need of finding alternative markets.
The main objectives of the action in Ghana are to:
• Identify market opportunities and new buyers in the domestic, regional and international market for the cocoa sector and associated crops
•Strengthen Public-Private alliances along the Global Value Chain (GVC) to support the development of more solid ecosystems including through digital applications. Build capacities of support institutions and stakeholders along the cocoa value chain (producers, MSMEs, Social Enterprises (SE)) for more competitive and resilient commercialization and production, with a focus on digital and other support services (market access and market intelligence tools, product development/innovation, compliance with quality standards, sustainability principles, access to finance)
•Facilitate linkages for SMEs, SEs and Producers Associations with international, regional and domestic partners, business and investment opportunities
The agribusiness component of NTF V in Ghana will be delivered through the ITC Alliances for Action (A4A) approach that seeks to build resilience and growth for farmers and small and medium enterprises through more mindful and responsible trade, production and consumption systems. A4A works as a network that promotes responsible partnerships for development and better trade, and leverages investments and technical support to achieve measurable impact for smallholder farmers and MSMEs. In the framework of NTF V, A4A will look beyond sustainable production to work on the enabling environment and target all steps of the value chain from bean to bar. Digital applications will be used to increase the overall competitiveness of the agribusiness value chain as well to scale up results and reach more partners and beneficiaries.