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May 29, 2011

Zimbabwe: US$225m seasonal tobacco exported so far

At least 43,8 million kilogrammes of flue-cured tobacco worth US$225 million have been exported over the past five months, latest statistics from the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board show.

The country exports tobacco to 43 different destinations worldwide. The export destinations include China, UK Canada, Germany, South Africa, Seychelles, Ukraine and Yemen.

China, which has emerged the major buyer, has bought 18,8 million kilogrammes worth US$140 million at an average price of US$7,48 per kg from Zimbabwe since January while Belgium has bought 3,4 million kg valued at US$14 million at an average price of US$4,02 per kg.

Britain has imported 2,27 million kg of tobacco from Zimbabwe valued at US$6,3 million while Russia has bought over one million kg of the golden leaf worth US$1,9m.

Honduras has bought 59,4 thousand kg of the leaf worth US$346 000 at an average price of US$7,35 per kg.

Indonesia, Ukraine and Malaysia are the other countries buying the crop at high prices.

Indonesia bought tobacco at US$6,33 per kg while Ukraine and Malaysia offered US$7,35 per kg.

On the continent, South Africa is topping the list buying over four million kg of tobacco worth US$12,4 million.

Kenya, which is an emerging market, has bought 381 500 kg valued at US$1,2 million.

Zimbabwe tobacco exports are expected to increase due to the increase in production of the golden leaf.

Zambia has bought 10 600 kg at US$0,30 per kg valued at US$3 100. Malawi has bought 58 300 kg at US$2,08 per kilogramme while Botswana offered US$0,43 per kilogramme for the 38 200 kg it bought.

So far the country has sold more than 98 million kg of tobacco since the opening of the selling season.

Since tobacco has emerged the highly paying crop compared to maize and cotton, the number of growers have significantly improved with country expected to regain its status as one of the major tobacco producers in the world.

The Herald

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