Thursday, July 25, 2024

Zambia puts restriction on Maize Exports


Agriculture Minister Hon. Michael Katambo discusses cassava with Zambian Breweries director of corporate affairs Ezekiel Sekele. Picture by Alex Mukuka.

Minister of Agriculture Michael Katambo says government has put an administrative measure on the export of maize outside the country.

Mr. Katambo says the restrictive measure is not a ban but a temporal measure to ensure food security in the nation.

He attributed administrative restriction as due to Food Reserve Agency (FRA) not reaching the strategic national reserve of purchasing 500,000 metric tonnes of maize.

Mr. Katambo noted that Zambia is practising a liberalized market economy to allow the private sector to participate in the purchase of the grain.

Mr. Katambo said government is monitoring the transportation of maize and mealie-meal in the country.

The parliamentarians in the house however received the restrictive measure as a ‘ban’ effected by government.

The Minister was responding to a question raised by UPND Kalomo Central Member of Parliament Harry Kamboni who wanted to find out how many metric tonnes of maize were purchased by the Food Reserve Agency (FRA), and whether the agency will meet its target to ensure food security in the country.

And Mr Katambo further urged farmers in the country not to offload the maize on the market unnecessarily.

Meanwhile, Mr. Katambo has disclosed that FRA has so far bought 166, 831 MT as at 11th October, 2018.

The Minister said this translates into 33.4 percent of FRA’s mandate.


  1. We talk of Agriculture diversification but on the other hand we put restrictions. shooting yourself in the foot

    • Another Maize gate on the horizon…… no one has ever been convicted for the scandal Malawi fired two ministers for that, that when you can see that their is something wrong in our country. How come the Malawi govt saw wrong doing in the whole scandal

    • You can’t just get all your produce out and leave your people run short. Good move GRZ. The other goodness is that HAZALUZA HAGAIN.

  2. There is now a very serious crisis in the maize market because of this export ban on mealie meal and maize.

    Millers are now offering K1600 per ton for maize which at exchange rate or 12.4 = $129 per ton. A deal rease from K1900 before devaluation of the kwacha.

    A price of $129 per mt is totally unsustainable for farmers (dollar inputs for fertilizer, diesel -because it is linked to exchange rate, chemicals and machinery and spare parts)

    Millers cannot buy maize if the can’t sell their mealie meal to export markets.

    If government continues down this path of banning exports they will ruin both maize farmers and maize millers.

    Banning of exports is Price Control by another name.

    The results of price controls on an economy are very well known and documented.

    For an…

  3. The govt should favour the agriculture sector the same way it has been favouring the mining sector by putting deliberate policies to encourage farmers to grow more maize since it is evident that the product has a very big market. Let them encourage farmers to invest more in winter farming by waiving taxes on all irrigation related equipment. This can go along way to reduce the deficit of maize in the country. What is important is the govt to put in measures and the private sector will pick it up.What is lacking in govt presently is strategies to tackle impending short comings.The govt lacks focus and seems to be caught napping every time a surprise springs out.

  4. Under pf people prefer to grow maize on a grand scale only during presidential campaign season because they know that the maize floor price will be politically motivated, right now they growing for personal consumption and animal feed. 500-166?334,shortfall not even reaching 50% mark up.

  5. Haaaa….. farmers are really facing had times. In addition to high costs of production; the price at which Miller’s have been buying maize per kg has reduced from about K95/K85 per kg to K70/K60 per kg. Meanwhile, the cost of transporting the commodity to the market has increased due to the recent fuel hikes.

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