Addis Ababa July 30/2022/ENA/ The approach of valuing commodities is a well-established principle and Ethiopia has succeeded in this regard as its coffee value chain is a good demonstration of such a performance, according to the former Executive Secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Africa.
The former Executive Secretary and Cape Town University Professor, Carlos Lopes said the country first fought to guarantee coffee origin certification.
According to him, mimicking is excellent examples of similar valuation for other soft commodities.
“It is about having a gourmet experience and an history linked to geography and special cultural conditions, only second it is about buying a food item.”
By partnering with a well-established and world recognizable brand like Starbucks, Ethiopia built origin reputation and that contributes to the identification of the coffee as originally from Ethiopia, the professor noted.
It is the same way Mexico, for instance, claims to be the origin of cocoa.
Second, Professor Lopes pointed out that, Ethiopia regulated the prices by launching a successful national commodity exchange that served to unify production and improve supply chains and to increase the country’s bargaining power with major international commodity traders.
Finally, it invested in credit schemes and an agricultural extension service that has comforted small producers.
He further elaborated that succeeding in economic transformation requires a long learning curve that is based on stable and predictable policy environment, improved institutional eco-system and good logistics.
By managing this complexity with coffee, Ethiopia has been able to replicate in many other agricultural-related value chains, including the excellent performance in the fresh-cut flowers market, the professor explained.
It is to be recalled that Ethiopia obtained 1.4 billion USD from coffee export during the country’s concluded fiscal year. The country has set an unprecedented record in terms of volume and revenue since it started exporting coffee to the world market.
Some 15 years ago this was the equivalent amount for the total Ethiopian exports.