Mohamed Mangane from the NGO, Soleil International, says that the banana sector in Tambacounda, Senegal, could come to a sudden stand still if the State does not give financial aid of at least 1.5 billion Cfa francs.

The main reason for such a situation is the lack of trust from banks regarding the sector. Mr Mangane explains that “Since the floods in 2003, the banks are wary of banana producers, asking them questions on the sureness of their activity, asking for guarantees, for land titles. So many questions that we cannot answer.”

However if the funds that Mr Mangane claims are necessary are put in place, the producers could repay their debts, which built up due to prohibitive petrol costs. Yet if the situation continues as it is, “in 5 years, you will no longer find bananas in the streets of Tambacounda or Dakar, unless from the Ivory Coast”.

According to Mr Mangane, if the local sector is well managed, they could have an optima production of 7,000 tons/ year.