Mr. Alassane Ouattara/AIP
The Government of the West African nation of Ivory Coast, officially the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire, would create a special fund for development of the country’s cotton sector.
Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara said the special fund would increase cotton production in the country to 600,000 tons by 2016, from the present production of 350,000 tons per year, Ivoirian news agency AIP reported.
President Ouattara said the National Agricultural Investment Programme to be implemented by the Government would result in creation of thousands of jobs in the sector.
The programme provides for allocation of 10 percent of 2015 budget to the agricultural sector, mainly consisting of cotton, cashew and food products.
The President assured cotton growers that the Government is aware of the strategic importance of agriculture for the development of the Ivorian economy.
He said resources would be mobilized and new policies would be implemented to develop the activities related to agricultural sector, including cotton production.
Presently, a bill to clarify the status of farmer and rancher is being discussed in the National Assembly. The bill is aimed at enhancing trade.
The President promised that in the coming years the situation of farmers in the country would be completely transformed.
Prior to the 2002-03 civil war that divided the country into two parts, Ivory Coast used to produce about 400,000 tons of cotton annually.
However, nearly a decade long crisis affected the country’s cotton production and in 2010-11, the country produced only 175,000 tons of cotton.