ZIMBABWE’S millers have predicted a 12% hike in the price of maize meal after the government arbitrarily re-instated the Grain Marketing Board’s (GMB) monopoly on grain procurement and banned private maize imports.
This follows a maize deal the government signed with a South African grain trader, for the supply of more than 100 000 metric tonnes of none genetically modified white maize.
The private millers have been directed to buy their maize from GBM at a cost of $462 per metric tonne for bulk and $490 per metric tonne (bagged) against the current prices of $420 per metric tonne.
Tafadzwa Musarara, the chairman of the Grain Millers Association of Zimbabwe (GMAZ), said the new GMB maize prices to millers would move the retail price of 10kg roller meal by 12% from the current retail price of $6,41 to $7,13.
“The decision to restore GMB’s monopoly is inflationary and will be financed by innocent and ordinary low-income earning consumers,” Musarara said.
He said GMAZ, which met with GMB chief executive officer Albert Mandizha on January 24, has recommended that the maize importation liberalisation regime introduced five years ago should immediately be re-instated and allow private traders and millers to import maize.
“Outstanding (maize import) permits must be signed and released,” he added.