Government has urged maize producers to use the Zambia Commodity Exchange (ZAMACE) to overcome marketing challenges.
“The platform will host buyers and sellers at both small and large-scale, and everybody will benefit,” says Agriculture Minister Dora Siliya.
The minister’s comments come in the wake of complaints by farmers that they are beset by a tumultuous marketing season arising from a slew of taxes and other challenges.
Siliya said her ministry and the Ministry of Finance are collaborating to provide a structured grain trading system. She said this will lead to the realization of legislation which created ZAMACE and the related agricultural credit system.
“The law has been in existence for a long time, but the actualisation of the grain commodity platform and credit system was slow to take shape,” she said.
ZAMACE was launched in 2015 to provide an efficient and vibrant agricultural commodity exchange, supported by a warehouse certification and receipt system to enhance market access, liquidity and credibility in the commodities market.
Services included certification of warehouses, issuance of “negotiable” warehouse receipts and the provision of a trade platform for buying and selling of grain that complies with industry standards. Other benefits include accessing global markets through the Johannesburg Stock Exchange where Zambian maize will be traded.