$129 million worth of tobacco sold

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Zimbabwe has registered an increase in tobacco sales for the first 42 days of this year’s selling season compared to the same period last year due to increase in output from farmers.

According to the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board (TIMB), at the end of last week 44 million kilograms of tobacco had been sold at an average price of $2,93 per kg, realising $129 million.

547 142 bales had been accepted while 45 097 bales had been rejected for various reasons.

The 2011 figures indicate a 24,28% increase from 35,4 million kg of tobacco sold at the same period in 2010 at an average price of $3,09 realising $109, 6 million.

TIMB expects the average tobacco price to remain at $3 per kg.

Tobacco output increased from 58 million kg in 2009 to 123 million kg last year.

In 2011, tobacco output is expected to increase to between 170 and 200 million kg on the back of increased hectarage.

According to statistics contained in the monetary policy, it is estimated that above 100 000 hectares of tobacco were planted in 2011.

Average tobacco prices are expected to remain firm, reflecting global supply and demand conditions while the coming back on board of renowned international buyers such as Japan Tobacco Industries and Premier Tobacco, is likely to boost tobacco prices.