Freight charges for transporting cocoa from Ghana to all international destinations, with the exception of the United Kingdom, has been increased by five per cent.
Similarly, mega bulk shipments have been increased by 10 per cent for the 2022/2023 cocoa season as agreed by the Cocoa Marketing Company (CMC), Ghana Shippers Authority and 18 shipping lines.
Per the agreement, the rate as calculated per tonne, meant cocoa currently stands at £31.50 to the United Kingdom (UK) for both bagged and bulk, while bagged and bulk cocoa shipped to the Northern Continent stands at €54.02 for bagged and €56.60 for bulk.
For Estonia, it is €61.74 for bagged and €64.70 for bulk; Mediterranean Europe €60.64 for bagged and €63.53, for bulk; Far East, US$100.44/106.09 for bagged and to Brazil US$116.24 for bagged and US$121.78 for bulk.
Subsequently, Bunker (Fuel) Adjustment Factor (BAF) to all destinations apart from UK has been increased by two percentage points from 28 – 30 per cent.
Those were the agreements reached after a meeting at this year’s Cocoa Freight Negotiation Conference held at the Hilton Sorrento Palace, Sorrento, Italy on Tuesday, September 20, 2022.
Global developments in the shipping market, including increasing charter rates, container shortage and rising bunker prices accounted for the new upward rates in freight charges.
Again, the need to keep a competitive freight rate for Ghana’s cocoa, especially in the light of competition from neighbouring countries was considered in the decision making.
Commenting on the recent charges, Mr Vincent Okyere Akomeah, the Managing Director of CM, said he was confident that the agreed rates would be “a win-win for the Government and the shipping lines.”
Mr Akomeah was hopeful of a good cocoa year with the help of key stakeholders such as the Ghana Standard Authority, the shipping lines, buyers and insurers.
Ms Benonita Bismarck, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Shippers Authority, expressed appreciation to the shipping lines for their support and cooperation.
She also thanked them for keeping faith with Ghana, promoting trade and serving as trusted conduits between CMC and the buyers for the international transportation of Ghana’s cocoa.
Shipping lines present at the conference included Maersk Line, Mediterranean Shipping Company, ZIM Integrated Shipping Services Ltd, Grimaldi, COSCO Shipping Lines, Messina Lines, Ocean Network, CMA-CGM and Arkas.