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Ivory Coast sees $500 mln export loss for cashew and cotton

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cashew PHOTO:Pixabay

Ivory Coast’s cashew and cotton industries will lose export sales worth nearly half a billion dollars this year because of the coronavirus pandemic, their association said on Monday.

The head of the Cotton-Cashew Council (CCA), Adama Coulibaly, told AFP that Asian prices for cashews had plummeted from $1,400 to $900 per tonne, representing an overall fall in export income of more than $300 million.

Asian prices for Ivorian cotton have fallen from 1,007 CFA francs ($1.66) a kilogram to 600 CFA francs, a loss of $172 million.

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“The coronavirus has financially impacted our activities in Asia, our main outlet,” he said.

“We have been faced with an absence of clients and contracts and lack of finance for buyers,” he said.

The former French colony is the world’s biggest producer of cashews, which go especially to Vietnam and India.

It is also the third-biggest producer of cotton in Africa, selling mainly to the textile industries in Bangladesh, China and Thailand.

The government last month announced an aid of 250 billion CFA francs ($410 million) to help the main exporters of the country’s commodities — cocoa, cashew, cotton, rubber, palm oil and coffee.

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