DAR ES SALAAM
Tanzania (Xinhua) -- Tanzanian
President John Magufuli on Wednesday ordered relevant
authorities to promptly pay cashew nuts growers who sold their
cash crop to the government but could not be paid on time.
In a meeting with religious leaders at State House in the
commercial capital Dar es Salaam, President Magufuli said he
wants to see cashew nuts farmers paid promptly.
"There are sufficient funds. And there should be no red-tape
in paying the farmers," said the president in the meeting
broadcast live by state-owned Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation.
Responding to queries by one of the religious leaders who had
wanted to know reasons behind the delayed payments to farmers,
the head of state directed the Ministry of Agriculture and the
Ministry of Industry and Trade should make arrangements for the
prompt payments to the farmers.
However, President Magufuli said payments should be made
after verifications were done by regional commissioners,
district commissioners and grassroots leaders in cashew nuts
growing regions of Mtwara, Lindi, Coast, Ruvuma and Tanga.
Last week, the Minister for Agriculture, Japhet Hasunga, said
the government will ensure that all cashew nut farmers would
have received payment for the produce it bought from them by the
end of this month.
The news raised hopes among farmers in cashew-growing regions
who have been complaining of delayed payments for over two
On November 12, last year, Magufuli said the government would
purchase all cashew nut stocks from farmers at the minimum price
of 3,300 Tanzanian shillings (about 1.44 U.S. dollars) per
kilogram through the Tanzania Agricultural Development Bank.
The decision was reached after the state issued a four-day
ultimatum to traders to buy cashew nuts at reasonable price.
This was after farmers rejected lower prices which were set
by the dealers.
Tanzania harvested more than 200,000 tonnes of cashew nuts in
the current farming season of the cash crop.
Tanzanian president says
government will buy entire cashew nuts stock
DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) --
Tanzanian President John Magufuli on
Monday officially announced the government’s decision to buy all
cashew nuts at 3,300 Tanzanian shillings (about 1.44 U.S.
dollars) a kilogram, after private buyers were reluctant to buy
"It’s true the price of cashews has dropped in India and
Vietnam, but our bodies, such as the commodity exchange and
Tanzania Trade Development Authority, have not bothered to help
farmers," he said.
Magufuli announced the decision after he had sworn in
ministers and deputy ministers he appointed last week in a
mini-cabinet reshuffle, the Directorate of Presidential
Communication said a statement.
Last week, Magufuli sacked Minister of Industries, Trade and
Investment Charles Mwijage and Minister of Agriculture Charles
He directed the Tanzania Agriculture Development Bank to
immediately release money for buying the nuts; he also ordered
the Tanzania People’s Defense Forces to get prepared for
ferrying bought cashew nuts from farmers.
On Friday last week, Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa issued a
four-day ultimatum to 35 private firms that have registered to
buy cashew nuts to state in writing by Monday the amount of
cashew nuts that they intended to buy this season.
"Failure to do so in four days beginning today (Friday) until
Monday at 4 p.m. the government will revoke permits to buy
cashew nuts that were given to the 35 firms," Majaliwa told a
news conference in the capital Dodoma.
The statement from the presidency said the army lorries will
be deployed in cashew nuts growing regions of Lindi, Mtwara,
Ruvuma, Coast and Tanga.
"I am appealing to cashew nuts farmers to be patient. The
government will buy their cashew nuts and seek a reliable
market," the president said.
Majaliwa said the current cashew nuts buying season witnessed
low prices of the crop during a handful of auctions held in
cashew nuts growing regions of Coast, Tanga, Mtwara, Lindi and
Ruvuma, forcing President Magufuli to convene a meeting last
week with buyers of the crop, in which it was agreed that a
kilogram of cashew nuts should be sold at 3,000 Tanzanian
"It was an open discussion during the meeting and the buyers
agreed to buy a kilogram of cashew nuts at 3,000 shillings
onward, but after the meeting the buying of cashew nuts in
auctions continued to be at snail’s pace," Majaliwa said.
The prime minister said during the previous season, 300,000
tonnes of cashew nuts were harvested and that 200,000 tonnes of
the crop are expected to be harvested during the current season.
Last week, Majaliwa told parliament that the government was
seeking markets for cashew nuts abroad.
"The government is holding talks with various countries that
can offer handsome prices for our cashew nuts," Majaliwa told
the house in Dodoma.
The new buying season started early this month but no trading
took place due to a boycott, leading to fears that the
disruption would affect the country’s foreign exchange earnings.
International prices for cashew nuts have dropped by nearly
half since March 2017.
Farmers in Cote d’Ivoire, the world’s top cashew nuts
producer with an output of 770,000 tonnes expected this year,
were reported last month to have been struggling to sell their
yields, with an estimated 150,000 tonnes lying around in
As one of largest Cashewnut producers in Africa, Tanzania
exports provide ten to fifteen per cent of the country’s