Sunday, February 20, 2011

Côte d'Ivoire banks to reopen, cocoa surges after 32 years

Five heads of state (Burkina Faso, Chad, Mauritania, South Africa, and Tanzania) will travel to the politically-torn Ivory Coast on Monday to meet with incumbent presidentLaurent Gbagbo and his rival, the UN-recognized winner of last year's polls Alassane Ouattara said VOA News.
Gbagbo announced on Thursday that it will nationalize the BNP Paribas, City Bank, Societe Generale and Standard Chartered in a report by Reuters.
Analysts say that this step seem to be a complicated measure knowing the banking system of the country.
The closure of at least six international banks last week in this West African country has put the financial system near collapse. People lined up to withdraw as much money as they could. This situation has led to scarcity of cooking gas, exports of cocoa were halted and suspension of the stock exchange.
All flights of Ivory Coast's airline have been suspended until next week.
Meanwhile, the political deadlock resulted in an increase in the price of cocoa--the country's major produce--after 32 years, said Bloomberg. The commodity price went north at $3,522 per metric ton, the highest since February 1979. A senior financial analyst said that it may well reach up to $4,000. The all-time high was on 18 July 1977 when it peaked at $5,379.
According to the prime minister appointed by Ouattara, in order to resolve the presidential stalemate is to hold similar protest actions that overthrew the Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak.

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