France is investing EUR68.5m (US$83.05m) over the next five years to boost cotton production in the Ivory Coast, according to reports.
A report published by Reuters, citing comments made by France’s Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire when he visited the Ivory Coast, says the cotton production programme will target 120,000 cotton farmers in the northern region of the country and boost revenue in the cotton sector.
The Ivory Coast produced 490,000 tonnes of cotton in the 2019/20 season and 2020/21 output is forecast at 500,000 tonnes by the Agriculture Ministry, the report states.
The pledge comes as the EU, which is the Ivory Coast’s largest trading partner, works to introduce laws to prevent the import of goods linked to deforestation and human rights abuses.
If the laws are adopted, buyers would be required to trace their inputs through every step of their supply chains, including starting at the level of small farms.
The Commission has announced it will present its legislative proposal on the matter later this year.