A Legal and Regulatory framework aimed at helping to establish the Ghana Commodity Exchange is expected to be handed over to the Ministry of Trade and Industry by close of Thursday April 5, 2012.
The comprehensive document, product of a legal team of consultants, contains detailed information on how the country could establish a commodity exchange programme and a warehouse receipt system simultaneously in a more efficient and effective manner.
Mr Joe Tackie, Chairman of the Technical Committee for the Ghana Commodity Exchange (GCX), made the disclosure in Accra at the closing ceremony of a two-week Stakeholders Training, jointly organised by the Ministry of Trade and Industry and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Accra.
The training was to assist the participants, from financial services providers, transporters, regulators, policy makers and farmers, to deliberate on effective ways of implementing the concept and to learn from success stories, especially from the Ethiopian Commodity Exchange (ECX) system.
An established GCX is expected to create orderly, transparent and efficient marketing system for Ghana’s key agricultural commodities, to promote agricultural investment, enhance productivity, encourage market access and fair returns for smallholder farmers and to facilitate the formalisation of informal agricultural trading.
Mr Tackie estimated that the roll out of the commodity exchange could experience some hiccups and stiff opposition from those who selfishly profited from the inefficiencies currently being experienced.
He added that persons who benefited from price fluctuations would not be happy with a successful implementation of the proposed GCX.
Mr Tackie called on the participants to take advantage over the situation to be aggregators, licensed buying companies or staff of the GCX.
The ECX, which began trading operations in April 2008, is said to have revolutionised Ethiopia’s tradition-bound agriculture through the creation of a new marketplace that served all market actors, from farmers, traders, processors through exporters to consumers.
It is said to have created trust and transparency through aggressive market data dissemination to all market actors, through clearly defined rules of trading, warehousing, payments and delivery and business conduct and through an internal dispute settlement mechanism.
Mr Ahadu Woubshet, Chief Operations Officer of ECX expressed optimism that Ghana was ready for a smooth take off of a successful roll out of a GCX programme.
“Ghana has the capacity to implement an effective Commodity Exchange Programme, the question to ask is when is the country starting,” he asked.
Mr Woubshet underscored the importance of a commodity exchange programme stressing it was critical for food security and trading in a more transparent manner.
He was optimistic that farmers would have access to international markets and at better prices, by virtue of the commodity exchange programme.
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