The country has earned over US$270 million from 49.4 million kilograms (mkg) of tobacco exported since the beginning of the year compared to 38.8 m kg during the same period last year.
During the comparable period, US$141.2 million was earned on flue-cured tobacco exports.
Data released by the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board (TIMB) show that China was leading as the major consumer of Zimbabwe’s golden leaf. China has spent $170.8 million on 20 mkg of tobacco averaging $8.53 a kg.
South Africa, the second largest importer purchased 6.7 m kg of tobacco valued at $19.9 million averaging $2,97 per kg while Indonesia, in third place, spent $13.4 million importing 3.2 m kg at an average price of $4,25 a kg. TIMB data also showed that United Arab Emirates spent $7.8 million on 2.5 m kg at an average price of $3.05 per kg, while Russia, in fifth position, has so far imported 2.5 m kg of tobacco from Zimbabwe spending $9.5 million at an average price of $3.65 a kg.
In 2015, a total of 40 countries are importing tobacco from Zimbabwe compared to 44 during the same period in 2014.
On seasonal sales locally, TIMB said: “The current seasonal auction sales at 44.4 million kg is 8.1% below 2014 auction output. Both contract sales output and price for 2015 have also been depressed by 14.3% and 6.3% respectively compared to previous season. Current auction floors throughput has significantly dropped and now signaling the end of the 2015 selling season.”
Last year, the country earned close to $1 billion from tobacco exports.