Malawi Investment and Trade Centre (MITC) says it has secured an international market for agriculture produce like legumes and livestock.
The Centre’s Board Chairperson Carlo Chokhoto told reporters in Lilongwe on Thursday that MITC, through embassies, market research and contacts identified markets for a number of agriculture commodities and livestock.
“There is a high demand of legumes in large volumes to be supplied to these markets which have already been secured as well as livestock like poultry,” he said.
Some of the legumes include 218 tonnes of sesame seeds mostly needed in China and the United Arab Emirates, 98,000 tonnes of beans in Tanzania, South Africa and Zimbabwe, 35,000 tonnes of rice in DRC, tea, macadamia nuts and coffee in Japan.
In addition, cow peas, pigeon peas, soya, and sunflowers are needed in countries like India and Zimbabwe respectively.
Other new commodities on the market are honey with a high demand in South Africa (320 tonnes), tomatoes and pineapples which are also on high demand.
He further said poultry is mostly needed in the neighbouring Mozambique at a volume of 50 tonnes.
He encouraged Malawian farmers to aggregate themselves and form cooperatives because one smallholder farmer cannot satisfy the demand.
Chokhotho said the trade centre has opened up opportunities for farmers to sell their products to maximize their profits through export.
All eligible businesses, commercial farmers and cooperatives should take advantage of the opportunity, he said.
He said the centre will facilitate all the deals for each commodity and therefore businesses, commercial farmers or cooperatives should contact their offices.
Deputy Director for Trade, Diamond Chikhasu, said all necessary policies and laws are in place to make sure that there is a conducive environment for business.
“We have policies like trade, investment policies as well as National Export Strategy which are there to help in these business deals,” he said.
Malawi’s economy largely depends on agriculture with tobacco as a major forex exchange earner.