The euro zone hopes to ratify laws later this year to protect forests, reduce child labor and end farmer poverty.
The European Union on Friday urged Côte d’Ivoire to prepare for tougher cocoa laws that the body hopes to ratify later this year in a bid to protect forests, reduce child labor and reduce child labor. end farmers’ poverty.
In September, the EU launched an initiative to improve the sustainability of the cocoa industry in collaboration with officials from the world’s main cocoa producers, Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, as well as with Member States, cocoa farmers and civil society.
“The European consumer wants to eat chocolate without having to think about child labor, deforestation or the poverty of those who grow cocoa,” said Jobst von Kirchmann, EU Ambassador to Côte d’Ivoire .
The EU is the main destination for Ivorian beans, accounting for 67 percent of the country’s cocoa exports.
The Ivorian government has called for increased support from the EU and other donors to help implement the proposed legislation, including a request for more than € 2 billion ($ 2.43 billion) to fight against deforestation.
Côte d’Ivoire’s cocoa industry employs nearly a million smallholder farmers – and accounts for 25 percent of the economy and 40 percent of export earnings.
“There is therefore a convergence of views and mutual interests between Côte d’Ivoire … and the EU,” said Patrick Achi, secretary general of the Ivorian presidency.