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The PBC Limited, the largest Licensed Buying Company (LBC) has refuted reports of its failure to pay farmers for cocoa beans purchased, explaining that it is yet to receive additional funds from the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), to advance payments.

According to the company, it has purchased cocoa beans in excess of the initial seed fund of GH¢390million advanced to it by COCOBOD.

Following concerns raised by some farmers for delayed payment for cocoa purchases, COCOBOD denied responsibility, indicating that it had provided enough funds to PBC, the largest and only state-owned LBC, to pay the farmers.

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But the company says the funds it received remains inadequate to cover all the purchases it has so far made.

“We have since secured Seed Fund of GH¢390million from COCOBOD and so far received Cocoa Taken-Over Receivables (CTORs) of GH¢81million in the current season. The amount has been used to purchase about 62,000 tonnes of cocoa,” said a statement signed by the Chief Executive Officer of PBC, Kofi Owusu Boateng.

It said the company’s purchases report for week six to COCOBOD shows that PBC has purchased a total of 67,567 tonnes of cocoa, of which the difference is yet to be paid for.

“PBC has actually purchased more cocoa than the Seed Fund given by COCOBOD could purchase.

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“As of November 22, 2018, PBC has submitted CTORs of GH¢104million to COCOBOD which remain unpaid,” the statement said.

To save the situation of delayed payments, the company said “we are liaising with COCOCOD to ensure prompt payment of the CTORs, and once there are paid on time, it should go a long way to address the current issues at hand.”

In addition, it said the “PBC is working closely with our bankers to secure additional bank guarantees to enable us secure more funding from COCOBOD to enable PBC to pay for all the credited stocks from out loyal farmers.”

By Edmund Mingle/ adrdaily.com