After observing that numerous proceeds are subtracted from tobacco growers’ earnings after selling, the Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Agnes Nkusa Nkhoma has called for the review of the farmers’ taxes.
The above occurred during the minister’s inspection of the Lilongwe tobacco auction floors today, as Tobacco Commission chief executive officer Kayisi Sadala concurred with the call for tax review.
However, the call arrives during a market that is registering a drop in sales, while prices are fairer than last year’s season. The latest figures from market operator, AHL Group, show that the country raked in $140.9 million from sales of the leaf by the end of week 14 of the market, compared to $170.6 million realised during the same time last year.
During the period under review, the country traded 92.7 million kilogrammes (kgs) of all types of tobacco at an average price of $1.52 per kg. Sadala attributed the slowdown in market performance to Covid-19 pandemic.