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Malawi: Malawi nets US$360m from tobacco

The just-ended, tobacco-selling season in Malawi has contributed at least US$361 million to the economy, almost equalling earnings from last year’s sales.

At least 191 million kilogrammes of the leaf was auctioned on the market this season.

“The market was fair,” said Bruce Munthali, General Manager of the Tobacco Control Commission (TCC).

He, however, said while barley did relatively well on the market, there were very few buyers of flue-cured tobacco for which Malawi is the global production leader.

Tobacco is Malawi chief cash crop, accounting for over 75 percent of all the southern African country’s foreign exchange earnings.

At least 80 percent of Malawians directly or indirectly depend on the industry which contributes up to 30 percent to the gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 23 percent in tax earnings.

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