Zambia maintains wheat imports restriction
Zambia has rejected calls by the Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries to relax its rules on imports of wheat flour, state radio reported.
Commerce, Trade and Industry minister Christopher Yaluma was quoted saying the decision was “in the best interest of the Zambian economy”.
Mr Yaluma made the remarks as he attended the SADC 30th meeting of the committee of Ministers of Trade held in Pretoria, South Africa.
Zambia’s decision, he said, was accepted by the SADC Secretariat by consensus.
Mr Yaluma further said that Zambia would not adopt international trade treaties which were not favourable to the local economy.
Zambia consumes an average of 540,000 tons of wheat per annum, but last season experienced a deficit of 250,000 tons.
Millers had to import 150,000 tons as a stop-gap measure.
SADC, whose headquarter is in Gaborone, Botswana, aims at promoting socio-economic cooperation and integration as well as political and security cooperation among the southern African states.
Its other members include Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius and Mozambique.
Namibia, Seychelles, Swaziland, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe also belong to the SADC bloc.