EU market significant destination for Ghana’s banana exports – Ama Dokua


Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Nana Ama Dokua Asiamah-Adjei, has stated that due to banana being Ghana’s top horticultural export both in terms of volume and value, the European Union market will play a crucial role in the destination of the country’s banana exports.

Out of the country’s 125,829 metric tons of annual banana production in 2022, 59,563 metric tons were exported to the EU market, a marginal decrease from the 67,126 metric tons to the EU market received from Ghana in 2021.

Mrs. Asiamah-Adjei believes a strong focus on the EU market will be crucial in reversing the downward trend.

“The country’s banana exports have significantly increased over the last 15 years, from 32,240 tons in 2007 to 108,379 tons in 2021. In this regard, the EU market will continue to be a major destination for Ghana’s banana exports,” she said at the commissioning of a new 224 housing units and other ancillary social infrastructure for farm workers of Golden Exotic Limited at Kasunja, Asutsuare in the Eastern Region.

Groundbreaking intervention

Dubbed the EU-Ghana Housing Project, the intervention is part of Banana Accompanying Measures (BAM) adopted by the EU in 2010, as a support package to 10 banana-exporting countries (including Ghana) from the African, Caribbean, and Pacific (ACP) Group of States.

“After the European Union concluded a deal with Latin America and the USA in 2009 to settle the 15-year Trade disputes, the agreed cuts in EU Tariffs for banana imported from Latin American countries increased competition for African and Caribbean banana exporters. The Accompanying Measures were therefore introduced to help the African and Caribbean banana exporting countries to remain competitive in the EU market,” the deputy trade minister stated in the speech she delivered on behalf of the Trade and Industry Minister, KT Hammond.

Describing the project as “groundbreaking”, she expressed optimism that the intervention will help the Ghanaian banana export industry “to become more competitive and also save jobs and livelihood of banana farmers and their families.”

The BAM package

The EU and the government of Ghana in 2013 signed a Financing Agreement (FA) for the BAM package at a total cost of 7.2 million Euros with Golden Exotics Limited and Volta River Estates Limited as the beneficiaries.

For Golden Exotics Limited (GEL), the EU funding was allocated specifically for the development of 224 new housing units and social infrastructure at Kasunja, designed to benefit the farm workers and their families.

Regarding Volta River Estates Limited (VREL), the EU funding was directed towards the production of high-quality organic certified compost, allowing the company to market their products as premium organic produce.

“In essence, the BAM support enabled the banana-producing companies to invest more, protect efficiency and productivity in their respective operations, as well as reducing the cost of production. This greatly helped to improve competitiveness in the EU market,” Mrs. Asiamah-Adjei. “Without this support, there would possibly have been layoffs of workers, and a significant number of families affected by the income and job losses.”

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