ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) - Ethiopia’s newly established electronic commodity exchange plans to launch an online trading system aimed at doubling agricultural export income to $400 million in 2010 from $239 million, an official said.
Solomon Edossa, chief technology officer in the Ethiopian Commodity Exchange (ECX), told Reuters on Tuesday that up to 20 online trading centres would be established in the main production hubs of commercial crops by the middle of 2010.
“Such set up of remote online trading centres would enable the country to increase its export income from the $239 million in 2008/09 to nearly $400 million in 2010,” he said.
Tenders for the installation of the new system will be opened in November. The project is being funded by credit from the International Development Association (IDA), Solomon said. He did not provide more details.
ECX is used for the sale of coffee, sesame, wheat, maize, peas and haricot beans. Major buyers of coffee come from Europe, the Middle East and Japan. Sesame and beans are mainly exported to China and India.
The system is expected to enable traders negotiate from their bases, saving expenses and time spent on travel to ECX headquarters to trade, Solomon added.
He said the spot trading application system would eventually be replaced by a futures trading application.
ECX was also negotiating with the Specialty Coffee Association of America on how Ethiopia can sell more of its gourmet coffee directly to its members. Members of the association buy the coffee through world markets like New York.