President Peter Mutharika lifted Malawi’s maize export ban with immediate effect earlier this week.
This comes after an increase in maize production. An estimated 3.2 million tons is expected for the country’s 2017/’18 maize harvest.
According to South African agricultural business chamber Agbiz, this is an increase of 33% from the previous season.
The announcement was made during an announced visit to the Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation (ADMARC).
“I am convinced that we have enough maize in stock, therefore we have decided to lift the ban on maize export. This is an executive order and I urge the Chief Secretary to gazette this. However, both National Food Reserve Agency and ADMARC will continue buying maize. We will provide them with more resources,” Mutharika said.
Earlier this year, he introduced the ban on maize exports to prevent a repeat of 2002, when the government exported maize to Kenya and was hit hard by food shortages a year later, reported Malawi24.
Mutharika said the plan is to fill national silos and to sell the excess. However, a few farmers were unhappy to sell maize locally at a low price due to high supply of the crop.