Zambia on Friday flagged off the export of 30,000 tonnes of fertilizer to Tanzania as the country starts establishing itself as a net exporter of the commodity in the southern African region.
The export to Tanzania of NPK Tobacco compound fertilizer produced by United Capital Fertilizer Limited, a subsidiary of the Chinese conglomerate Wonderful Group of Companies Limited, becomes the second export this year following the initial export of 15,000 tonnes to Botswana last month.
The company was given the contract to supply the fertilizer for the 2023/2024 farming season by the Tobacco Board of Tanzania for tobacco farmers.
Zambia’s Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry Chipoka Mulenga said it is gratifying that the country, which used to be a net importer of fertilizer, was slowly becoming a net exporter in the region.
He said the decision by countries to source fertilizer from Zambia is a good gesture as it will go a long way in improving African economies.
“Africa has now waken up. We are now beginning to work together as African countries. Time has now come for Africa to do business with each other,” he said.
Joseph Mbiji, acting chairperson of the fertilizer firm, said the export of fertilizer to Tanzania underscores the strong economic ties between the two countries.
He said the decision by the company to commence manufacturing of fertilizer in Zambia has come at a critical time when the supply of fertilizer from traditional regions has been disrupted due to conflicts.
According to him, this gives the company an opportunity to produce more and ensure that the southern African region becomes self-sufficient in fertilizer.
He said the increasing demand from regional countries has compelled the company to accelerate expansion efforts for compound fertilizer production and move forward with the construction of another plant for urea fertilizer.