BAT Hails Exchange Rates As Exports Grow By 44%

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By Alois Vinga

LISTED tobacco processor, British American Tobacco (BAT) has hailed the prevailing stable exchange rates and easing inflationary pressures fostering stable pricing during the review period where export volumes recorded a 44 % growth.

Presenting a trading update for the nine months up to September 31, 2021, BAT chairperson, Lovemore Manatsa said the company delivered overall volume growth of 32% versus the same period last year mainly attributable to increased consumer demand, increased export of cutrag tobacco, and the easing of the Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

“The economy benefited from the decline in the monthly inflation rate and the steady foreign currency exchange rate which resulted in stable pricing in the period under review with export volumes of leaf and cutrag tobacco increasing by 44% in the nine months period under review compared to the prior year, due to increased demand from our export markets,” Manatsa said.

The remarks come after the positive impact realized by the launch of the Foreign Exchange Auction platform which, despite the  volatility headwinds,has  been widely credited for bringing relative stability and slowing down inflation

During the review period, BAT recorded a volume growth of 25% from the sale of cigarettes compared to the same period last year, on the back of increased demand from our consumers, increased investment in our brands, and improved access to the market and product availability.

“In the outlook, Zimbabwe’s economy is forecast to recover in the context of a good agricultural season, adaptation to Covid-19 induced limitations, and continuation of fiscal and monetary policy reforms.

“The company remains committed and confident that our business strategies will deliver value growth for our shareholders,” he said.