Launched just over a year ago, the Ghana Commodity Exchange (GCX) started trading sorghum and sesame this week. The Ghanaian agricultural commodity exchange thus brings the number of agricultural products traded on its platform to five, alongside soya and white and yellow corn.
« Just as it has done with the maize and soybean value chain in Ghana, GCX aims to bring increased value to sorghum and sesame by providing effective solutions to the challenges affecting the country’s agricultural infrastructure for these products, » GCX said in its statement issued on November 4. However, it was not these two agricultural commodities that were initially favoured by the Ghanaian stock exchange. In a communication dated early September, the GCX announced that it would quote paddy rice by the end of the year. The circumstances decided otherwise, as the stock exchange has met with strong interest from farmers, traders and other actors in the value chain for the negotiation of sesame and sorghum.
In fact, an agricultural commodity exchange has many advantages for it. For producers, it provides transparency on market prices, secures payment for their sales and strengthens their financing capacity through certificates of deposit (the stored goods are used as collateral to obtain financing, NDLR). On this specific point, GCX, in partnership with ARB Apex Bank, implemented an electronic warehouse receipt financing program in late October that should benefit approximately 200,000 farmers in the first year of its launch. As for buyers, they will be guaranteed a certain level of quality, while lowering transaction and transport costs through the certified warehouse system. GCX management also pointed out that the two new listed products « have a high tolerance for drought, making them viable investments that can replace barley used in the brewing industry, making them a valuable asset in the international market ».