Abidjan, 4 October 2018 — The Executive Director, Mr. Michel Arrion, on behalf of the International Cocoa Organization, has expressed sincere condolences to the Government and people of Indonesia, following the earthquake and tsunami that devastated parts of the island of Sulawesi in late September.

It appears as of this date that well over 1,500 people have been killed and many more injured, displaced or made homeless by the disaster. Besides the destruction and loss of life, it appears that infrastructure has been severely affected as well, where aid is most desperately needed.

The island of Sulawesi is the most important cocoa producing area in the country and many farmers could well be affected by the effects of the earthquake and tsunami.

The Organization would like to show its firm support to Indonesia, as an important Member country. The ICCO would also encourage all Member and Observer countries, as well as its partners in the cocoa and chocolate industry, to liaise with the Indonesian government in order to assist in any way possible.

Abidjan, 1 October 2018 — The International Cocoa Organization (ICCO), headquartered in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, has announced the appointment of Mr. Michel Arrion as its new Executive Director.

A Belgian national, Mr. Arrion (pictured) is an EU civil servant who has served as Ambassador of the European Union in various African countries such as Nigeria, Rwanda and Côte d’Ivoire.Mr. Arrion is looking forward to the opportunity to use his experience and knowledge of the cocoa sector to work with Producers and Consumers to surmount the challenges facing the sector.

Mr. Arrion was appointed by consensus at the late September meeting of the International Cocoa Council, the Organization’s governing body. He will serve a five-year term in the post.

The Organization is pleased to welcome Mr. Arrion and at the same time thank the outgoing Executive Director, Dr. Jean Marc Anga, for his service.