Zambia boosts 2007 maize exports to 350,000 Tonnes


maifield_inzambia.jpgZambia will allow 100,000 tonnes of additional white maize exports this year bringing the total to 350,000 tonnes, Agriculture Minister Ben Kapita told Reuters in an interview on Tuesday.

The move comes after the country recorded surpluses in the last three agricultural seasons, Kapita said.

“We are going to export 250,000 tonnes from this year’s stock and 100,000 tonnes which should have been exported to Zimbabwe but was kept after Malawi undercut us on the price.”

Kapita said the maize was ready for export to countries with food deficits, but he did not identify the countries. In the past, the country has exported to Zimbabwe and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Kapita also said Zambia had started to prepare for the 2007/08 farming season with the distribution of subsidised fertiliser and seed to 125,000 small-scale farmers set to start soon.

The 125,000 farmers will be less than the 210,000 farmers who benefited from government support in 2006 because some farmers have become self-sustaining after receiving initial government assistance.

“The government is downsizing the number of farmers getting help because some of them have graduated from the fertiliser support programme. Most farmers are now able to buy their fertiliser from the private sector,” Kapita said.

Last week, Kapita said Zambia’s 2006/07 maize output declined 4.4 percent to 1.36 million tonnes compared with output for 2005/06 due to floods which destroyed the crop in 41 of the country’s 72 districts.

Kapita said Zambia would keep 250,000 tonnes of maize in strategic reserves compared with a surplus of 160,000 tonnes the previous year.



  1. In Zambia often times than not, when the maize barn has been said to be too full, in the context of even allowing exports……my stomach churns…the very next season you know what to expect! Beware….Today you are selling ..tommorrow you are doing the rounds with a big begging bow! Sounds familiar?

  2. This kind of thing always happens, we supposedly have a bumber harvest and then in our intelliegence decide to export as much as we can. Come next farming season, we have a shortage of maize reserves–25,000tonnes this year.
    I co-sign with t boz, disaster is looming, we dont even have enough oil stocked up at Indeni

  3. We have to hope and trust that the Ministry of Agriculture and Coops are doing their best in forecasting in order to avoid the disaster many people are contemplating. But keeping excess stocks of commodities like maize is also a very costly project.

  4. This is all circus, last week Ben Kapita talked of a decline of 1.36 million tonnes by 4.4% which is likely to have an effect on food security due to winter rains and agains he has come with another story of exporting maize owing to the fact that the country recorded surpluses in the last 3 years (2005,2006,2007). Evidently , in 2005 the country was among the famine stricken states in the region and where did farmers get that initial surplus?. In addition the 1.36 million tonnes of maize is nothing when the country is hit by 3 consecutive droughts despite having the intended 1.2 million tonnes target. Lastly Ben Kapita, try to collect eminent data next time when reporting issues concerning the welfare of the Zambians.

  5. Post news paper plz have respect for the dead pipo. the front page picture of those bandits is horror and can bring nightmares to children.

  6. #5 Sam K,sometimes our leaders just read statements for the sake of reading them.
    I wonder whether they discuss with the ministrial officials on the figures they are provided with.
    Maybe they are trying to do some economics of supply and demand.

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