Malawi President Proposes Switch from Growing Tobacco to Cannabis

Malawi President Lazarus Chakwera has warned that his country's leading foreign exchange earner, tobacco,was in terminal decline and urged a switch to high-growth crops like cannabis, which was legalised locally for some uses last year. Chakwera made the comments during a state of the nation address in which he said tobacco was expected to earn less than U.S.$200 million in 2021, a figure roughly similar to the past two years but well below previous annual earnings that used to top U.S.$350 million. Countries around the world are either legalising or relaxing laws on cannabis, including several in southern Africa such as Zambia, Lesotho and Zimbabwe.

InFocus

Griffins Kaliza in his tobacco farm in Malawi's central Mchinji dsitrict.

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