Ghana’s cocoa exports to Nigeria market doubles in 2018 …due to zero tariff rate

Chief Executive Officer of GEPA, Afua Asabea Asare

The export value of Ghana’s cocoa powder to the Nigeria market in 2018 under the HS code 180610 doubled from the previous year’s value, earning US$11. 51 million.

This amount represents 96 percent of Ghana’s total exports of the product went into the Nigeria market during the year under review as against 46 percent recorded in 2017.

This was contained in a recent Competitor Analysis report released by the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA).

According to the report, Ghana’s global exports of cocoa powder in 2018 stood at US$ 11.99 million, a marked jump of 608 percent over the global exports value in 2017. The country exported US$2 million and US$ 1.7 million of the product in 2016 and 2017 respectively.

The huge surge was largely instigated by the zero tariff applied on Ghanaian cocoa powder in 2018 in the Nigerian market.

The zero tariff is applied to products that have met the ECOWAS rules of origin and are under the ECOWAS Trade Liberalization Scheme (ETLS) Protocol. The ETLS was instituted to encourage entrepreneurial development in the region and increase intra-regional trade to boost economic activities.

It is also aimed at improving West African countries  price competitiveness within the sub regional market and increasing Gross Domestic Products (GDP) of member States, which translates to better welfare for its citizens. The ETLS is the main ECOWAS operational tool for promoting a Free Trade Area in the West Africa sub-region.

For three years running, Ghana has been the dominant supplier of cocoa powder in the Nigerian market.

This continuous development indicates that there is a huge market potential for Ghana to institute measures not only aimed at boosting export of cocoa powder in both the Nigeria and other international markets, but measures and policies that will similarly result in the increase of export sales of all cocoa products from Ghana.

Currently, Ghana is ranked the 11th largest exporter of cocoa powder in the world. The country exported circa US$ 12 million dollars of the cocoa derivative in 2018.

At the global level, Germany is the largest supplier of cocoa powder in the world, with an export value of US$ 49.8 million in 2018. Other leading global suppliers are Mexico and the US with export values of US$ 43.5m and US$ 35.5m respectively last year.

The global market for cocoa powder is expected to witness a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of nearly 2.2 percent in terms of volume till 2026. The market is projected to surpass 1,315 ‘000 tonnes by the end of 2026.

By Dundas Whigham