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September 14, 2008

Ivory Coast coffee, cocoa sector strike delays exports

Ivory Coast coffee and cocoa exchange workers maintained their indefinite strike over pay for an eighth day (September 12), delaying exports from the world's biggest cocoa producer.

The 183 workers at the state-controlled agency began the walkout on Sept. 3 and halted export registrations, necessary before commodities can be shipped, on Sept. 9. An earlier five- day strike slowed deliveries of cocoa.

"This strike is a real problem,'' Serges Tanoh, a shipping agent at the cocoa farmers' cooperative Coopaai, said by phone from Abidjan. "We can't even ship a single cocoa bean.''

Coopaai exported 5,693 metric tons of cocoa from October through July.


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