The Grain Millers Association of Zimbabwe (GMAZ) says the government has agreed to ban maize imports in order to ring-fence this year’s good harvest.
Addressing journalists in Bulawayo on Thursday, GMAZ chairperson Tafadzwa Musarara stated that the move was also meant to ensure the local market was protected for the benefit of local millers. Said Musarara:
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In order to safeguard everything, we then agreed with the government that they are going to ban the importation of maize into the country.
Importation of maize meal and any other maize processed products is going to be banned.
This is meant to ring-fence our harvest and make sure that the market is protected for the local.
Musarara said GMAZ was working with the government to stop the side marketing of maize contract farmers.
The GMAZ boss also said they have engaged the government to ensure police roadblocks were set up on all major roads from feeder borders. He said:
We are aware of imports that might come from Zambia, South Africa, Mozambique and Malawi.
The whole region has received a bumper crop, so we are fully behind government in the setting up of roadblocks from the main feeder boarders and we will partly contribute financially to that programme as in funding the entire policing so that side marketing is killed.
Side marketing for the past decade has been affecting the successful implementation of contract farming in this country.
I am happy that government this time is coming very strongly so that our bumper harvest, our local agriculture is protected.