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Palm oil in the Ivorian economy

In Côte d’Ivoire, the National Agricultural Investment Program (PNIA) decided to set the third Palm Plan in the global strategy of development of the different agricultural sectors. This third palm plan is the opportunity for the Ivorian Government to show the importance of the palm oil in the economy of the country. The main objective of this national plan is to increase the Ivorian production of crude palm oil from 400.000 tons today to 600.000 tons to 2020.

This ambitious project is the symbol of the competitiveness of the Palm Oil sector in Côte d’Ivoire. It allows the country held honorable ranks at global and African levels of industrial crops growing. Côte d’Ivoire is the second African regimes producer with 1.8 million tons per year, just after Nigeria. Côte d’Ivoire and Nigeria produce together 4 per cent of the world global market provided by Africa.

Côte d’Ivoire still one of the most important producer at the continental level with a total growing area of 210 000 ha. This orchard is divided in traditional plantations (PV: 160 000 ha) and industrial plantations (PI: 50,000 ha). The palm oil sector, according to the latest statistics, brings 500 billion CFA francs to the Ivorian economy. Two million peoples live directly and indirectly of this sector which brings 200,000 regular jobs. The production of palm oil is 3.13% of Ivorian GDP.

These economic indicators show the importance of the value chain of the oil palm which includes a long list of professions and businesses. In this long list of professions and businesses, some of them take care of the plantations, an others work to transform the raw productions and others are involved in the manufacture of finished products. The oil palm contributes to the reduce poverty and ensures food security for many Ivorians because it is a very popular food for many ethnic groups.

The Ivorian domestic market consumes 45% of its national production of oilseeds. The remaining 55% are on the sub regional market, mainly in the countries of WAEMU (West Africa Economic and Monetary Union) and ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States), which still remain largely deficient of oilseeds.

This deficit of oilseeds is estimated around 500,000 tons in WAEMU and over 1.8 million tons in ECOWAS.This situation is a market opportunity for the Ivorian producers. Côte d’Ivoire knows about it there is a market opportunity! That is the reason why the partners of the sector work to make it strong with a mobilization of all the professional organizations. This mobilization includes also a very important support of the Ivorian authorities. The empowerment and the development of Palm Oil Industry in Côte d’Ivoire become the main priority of AIPH (Interprofessional Association of Oil Palm).