22 de julio de 2024

Benín acoge reunión del Comité Directivo de la “Asociación para el Algodón”

El Gobierno de Benín acoge en Cotonú, del 4 al 6 de junio, una reunión del Comité Directivo de la Asociación para el Algodón.


El Gobierno de Benín acoge en Cotonú, del 4 al 6 de junio, una reunión del Comité Directivo de la Asociación para el Algodón, una iniciativa destinada a respaldar la participación de los países africanos en las cadenas de valor del algodón. Es la primera vez que el Comité Directivo se reúne en África desde que la Directora General de la OMC, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, y el Presidente de la FIFA, Gianni Infantino, pusieron en marcha el proyecto en la Decimotercera Conferencia Ministerial, celebrada en febrero 2024. Los participantes, incluida la OMC, recibieron información actualizada sobre los últimos avances y debatieron las próximas etapas para lograr resultados concretos para los productores de algodón.

Participants in the multi-agency Steering Committee meeting include representatives from the African Export-Import Bank (AFREXIMBANK), Better Cotton Initiative (BCI), Cotton made in Africa (CMIA), FIFA, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC), International Finance Corporation (IFC), International Labour Organization (ILO), International Trade Centre (ITC), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the WTO and the UN resident coordinator in Benin.

In her opening remarks, Benin’s Minister of Industry and Trade, Ms. Shadiya Alimatou Assouman, underlined the importance of the cotton sector to the economic development of Benin and the other Cotton-4 countries (Burkina Faso, Chad and Mali). She also acknowledged the important work being undertaken by the WTO and FIFA through the Partenariat pour le Coton initiative. In addition, she emphasized the need to transform more cotton fibre into textiles and stressed that more support would be needed from key partners.

Minister Assouman noted that the next World Cotton Day is scheduled to be held in Benin in October 2024 and welcomed the collaboration of the Partenariat pour le Coton in preparing for this event.

In his opening remarks, Senior Advisor to the WTO Director-General, Mr Stephen Fevrier, reaffirmed DG Okonjo-Iweala’s staunch support for the African cotton sector and underlined the WTO’s commitment to ensuring that this initiative delivers concrete results.

He said that the “Partenariat pour le Coton” was one of the successful outcomes of the WTO-FIFA Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed in 2022. This joint initiative has helped to raise awareness of the importance of supporting the efforts of the C-4 and Côte d’Ivoire to move up the cotton value chain and to ensure that more benefits are reaped by these countries, he said.

Looking forward, Mr Fevrier called on the Steering Committee to build on the research results gained in the first stage of the initiative and to set clear timelines and deliverables for the coming months. “Our next target is to leverage the partnerships established to deliver concrete results so that when we return to Cotonou for World Cotton Day, we can show meaningful progress,” he concluded.

During the three-day meeting, the Steering Committee will discuss and validate the findings of a baseline assessment undertaken by UNIDO with the support of ITC in the first phase of the Partenariat pour le Coton. This assessment will help identify the key constraints faced by the C-4 in increasing value-added output from the sector. The second phase will focus on resource mobilization and the implementation of a comprehensive assistance programme to bridge the identified capacity gaps.

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