Switzerland officially became the first country to ratify the International Coffee Agreement (ICA) 2022 on 11 May, approved by members of the International Coffee Organization (ICO) in June 2022.
The country has been a member of the ICA 2022 since 1964, which aims to promote exchange and cooperation between consumer and producer countries. During the renegotiation of the ICA 2007, due to expire in February 2024, Stefanie Küng of Switzerland chaired the Working Group on the future of the agreement which enabled the drafting and approval of the new ICA 2022.
“Many countries have already signed the ICA 2022 and now Switzerland has shown that with strong political commitment the parliamentary process of ratification can be completed promptly and efficiently. In order to enter into force definitively, signatory governments holding at least two-thirds of the votes of the exporting Members and at least two-thirds of the votes of the importing Members must have deposited instruments of ratification,” says ICO Executive Director Vanúsia Nogueira.
Aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and maintaining its intergovernmental nature, the ICA 2022 is characterised by streamlined and more effective governance, a fairer distribution of contributions that reflects the actual value distribution in the coffee global value chain, and stronger cooperation with and integration of the private sector and civil society. It also gives a clear mandate to the ICO Secretariat to assist Members to mobilise resources in order to realise their coffee sectors’ full potential and act sustainably.
According to the ICO, Switzerland forms an integral part of the global coffee landscape. With an average of US$2.2 billion in net trade, Swiss companies are heavily involved in the international coffee market and Swiss coffee roasters play a leading economic role internationally. Around 10 per cent of the world’s coffee export value is attributed to Switzerland, with its citizens enjoying 16.2 million cups every day.
The new ICA 2022 will address the challenges facing the sector through the multilateral channel rather than country-to-country negotiations, strengthening the key role played by the ICO as the centre of ‘coffee diplomacy’ and reaffirming its Coffee Public-Private Task Force as the main forum for multi-stakeholder discussions on coffee-related issues at the public and private levels.
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