The Grain Millers Association of Zimbabwe (GMAZ) has secured 400 000 tonnes of maize as a means of ensuring food sufficiency in the country.
GMAZ chairman Mr Tafadzwa Musarara said this in a statement yesterday.
“I am pleased to inform the nation that GMAZ has secured 400 000 tonnes of white maize from Malawi and Zambia. “40 percent of this maize will be coming from grain utility companies namely Food Reserve Agency of Zambia and Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation (ADMARC) of Malawi.
“Preparations are now underway to ensure that the physical movement of this maize into Zimbabwe commences by no later than June 30, 2022,” said Mr Musarara.
He thanked Zimbabwe’s Embassy Missions in Zambia and Malawi for their efforts in facilitating the purchase.
Mr Musarara said the introduction of economic diplomacy was noble and hopes it will assist other economic sectors in the country.
The sourcing of maize by the GMAZ followed an invitation by Cabinet in February for private grain millers to commence maize imports using free funds to complement local stocks.
“The decision is prudent as it enhances national food security in light of the degeneration of geo-politics in the grain farming regions of Eastern Europe,” said Mr Musarara.
There is a general shortage of food across the world while where is if available, prices are now sky high following the Russia/Ukraine conflict.
It is understood that Ukraine has 20 million tonnes of grain in its silos, but has challenges moving it since ports are closed.
Yesterday, Russia said it could offer humanitarian corridors to allow food to be moved across the world, but demanded that the sanctions imposed on its products and financial institutions by Europe and the United States be lifted to allow it to move its products too.
The conflict between the two neighbours has pushed up prices of almost everything, with fertiliser prices going up by over 40 percent and cooking oil by over 30 percent.
Shortages have also resulted, with some countries now rationing the number of items that customers can buy to allow everyone an opportunity to access such products.