The 2021 tobacco marketing season will open on 7 April, an official has revealed.
In a letter addressed to stakeholders, Tobacco Industry Marketing Board (TIMB) chief executive, Andrew Matibiri said:
All stakeholders are advised that the 2021 auction tobacco marketing season opens Wednesday, April 7, 2021. Contract Tobacco Sales will open on Thursday, April 8, 2021.
Normally, the tobacco marketing season opens in February, but the coronavirus crisis could have affected the dates for this year.
Meanwhile, tobacco farmers will be paid 60 per cent of their proceeds in foreign currency, with 40 per cent being in local currency.
Last year farmers were paid 50 per cent of their proceeds in US dollars with the other 50 per cent being in Zimbabwe dollars.
Responding to questions in Parliament recently, Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement Minister, Anxious Masuka, said:
The Reserve Bank has put in measures to the effect that there is going to be the same treatment to everyone who is exporting produce so that tobacco farmers are happy because they are going to get 60 per cent of the US dollar component.
In 2020, tobacco farmers were not happy after the RBZ insisted on paying for their crop using the official exchange rate of US$1: ZWL$25, which was prevailing at the time.
Currently, the official exchange rate is at US$1:Z$84 but far below the alternative exchange rate of US$1:Z$120.
More: The Herald