Over a period of five years, the French Development Agency (AFD) will invest €68.5 million ($83.04 million) to increase cotton production in Ivory Coast, Bruno Le Maire, economy minister of France said on his recent visit to the country.
The programme will help 120,000 farmers in the country’s northern region and boost the revenue of the cotton sector.
The AFD will fund the Resilience of Cotton Systems (Resco) project to encourage sustainable practices and help farmers to adapt to the effects of climate change, according to Ivory Coast’s media reports. The sector’s main organisation in the country Intercoton will implement the project.
European Union (EU) is Ivory Coast’s biggest trading partner and the move to help the country has been announced by France following EU’s mandate to prevent imports of goods linked to human rights abuses and deforestation.
Ivory Coast produced 490,000 tonnes of cotton in 2019/20 season and is expected to produce 580,000 tonnes by 2021/22 season. Brou Kouakou, the executive secretary of Cotton Ginners’ Association said that they will sow close to 460,000 hectares for the 2021/22 season.