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The Ethiopian Commodity Exchange (ECX), which celebrates its 10th anniversary announced that the next market scheme includes trading futures and forward contracts in addition to launching industrial trading at the electronic trading platform.
The commodity exchange platform which officially formed in March 2008 and commenced its first trading as of April 2008 has celebrated its ten year anniversary at an event held at ECA on July 28.
Wondimagegnehu Negera, CEO of ECX, said that one of the next strategies would be introducing a future trading scheme for the country.
Since the formation of the modern trading ECX, which is considered exemplary and the first such kind of trading in Africa, has been engaged in spot trading, while it has undertaken several studies to potentially launch futures trading which is common in most commodity exchanges in other countries.
“We have good experience in spot trading with zero defaults in the last ten years so that would be a good indication for the success of futures and forward trading,” Wondimagegnehu told Capital.
They used foreign consultants to conduct the study and based on their recommendations they plan to prepare a financial system, crop insurance and some legal safeguards.
Currently coffee exporters buy the bean via spot trading and engage with market actors who link with future trading at the export destinations. “When futures trading begins, exporters will base prices on future and forward trading schemes locally and via the international market. This reduces the trading risk and matches on both trading,” he said.
It is expected to commence in the near future, according to Wondimagegnehu. “It is difficult to determine exactly when but the economy and the industrialization is expanding so we want to start it soon,” he added.
The agricultural industrial parks that the government launched in different corners of the country will also get products from the trading at ECX, according to the new plan.
“We plan to supply standard commodities with ample volume for parks in an organized manner,” he said, “Manufacturers shall access the input in nearby areas without challenges in warehousing and logistics facilities.”
According to the CEO, currently ECX is under discussions with relevant bodies about the issue.
Besides agricultural products other products such as sugar will be traded on the exchange floor. The CEO stated that some beverage industries like breweries are asking to get materials under the trading scheme at ECX.
Regional trading centers will be the other new operation that the commodity exchange will commence in the near future. For instance trading in Hawassa will commence operation in September. “We have finalized pre conditions and data test at Hawassa so we will commence operation soon,” he added.
Besides that the trading centers in Gonder, Nekempt and Hummera, all of them are centres for sesame seed production, will join the scheme. Jimma and Adama, which are sources of coffee and pea beans respectively, will also have trading centers.
“Expanding trading centers will be a good opportunity to expand the trading and the commodity volume transacted under ECX and it will reduce the trading chain,” the CEO added.
In the past ten years the commodity exchange has established 22 warehouses with a capacity of storing 307,000 tones at one time. In the stated period 180.3 billion birr or 4.8 million tons of commodities were traded.
Coffee, sesame seeds, red kidney beans, mug beans and other agricultural products are traded on the floor. New commodities are expected to be included in the coming year.
At first there were 98 seats but now there are 333, while the trading actors, engaged in buying and selling have increased from 2,176 to 17,067 as of last month.