Tobacco exports drop 12pc

Buyers busy at the tobacco auction floors in Harare in this file photo

Buyers busy at the tobacco auction floors in Harare in this file photo

Oliver Kazunga, Senior Business Reporter
ZIMBABWE’S seasonal tobacco export receipts have registered a 12 percent drop so far to $216,9 million compared to $246,3 million realised during the comparable period in 2016, official data shows.

As of May 11, 2017, data from the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board (TIMB) shows that although the value of the tobacco export receipts was lower than last year, this year’s seasonal export volumes were at 46,1 million kilogrammes, 9 percent above last year’s seasonal volumes of 42,5 million kg.

TIMB said: “46,1 million kg has been exported to 47 destinations compared to 42.5 million kg exported to 38 destinations during the same time last year.

“China remains the major export destination followed by Belgium and South Africa. 2017 export revenue of $216.9 million is 12 percent lower than revenue received in 2016 during the same period,” said TIMB.

China has so far imported 13,8 million kg of tobacco valued at $114,5 million at an average price of $8,28 a kg.

Belgium and South Africa were also on second and third places respectively having imported 4,8 million kilogrammes and 3,3 million kilogrammes.

Seychelles, Kenya, Egypt, Russia, Indonesia, the United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong, Tunisia, Canada, Jordan and Panama are some of the countries consuming flue-cured tobacco.

The Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board (TIMB) also said as of May 10, 2017, the bale rejection rate declined from 12,4 percent on the first day of the marketing season to 5,7 percent on day 37.

“The bale rejection rate continues to decline from a rate of 12,4 percent on day one to 5,7 percent on day 37. Defective bales such as mouldy or mixed grades remain the major reason for the rejection,” said TIMB.

Meanwhile, the tobacco marketing board indicated that a significant increase in new grower registration has been noted, improving by 90 percent to 18 826 this season from 9 849 in 2016 during the comparable period.

“Total registration for 2017 increased by 27 percent to 97 128 and 20 938 growers have sold through the auction system and 60 049 growers through the contract system,” it said.


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