Zanzibar clove production drops by 60%

Clove production in Zanzibar has gone down by over 60 per cent due to what experts described as cyclical nature of the crop.

The Bank of Tanzania (BoT) said in its latest report that clove harvest fell to 2,000 tonnes as of September 2015, from 5,600 tonnes of same period last year.

The drop in production volume affected Zanzibar’s goods exports that dropped by 56.5 per cent to 41.1 million US dollars.

“The fall in the value of cloves exports was on account of volumeƉ due to cyclical nature of the crop,” BoT said in latest monthly economic review report of October.

In the year ending September, exports of goods and services in Zanzibar fell by 34 per cent to 172.1 million US dollars from the amount recorded in the corresponding period last year. 

The months of September, October and November are the crucial time of year for clove farmers on Pemba. It is the period of the short seasonal rains when the cloves are harvested by hand. Bunches on lower branches can be pulled off or shaken free.

On the other hand, services receipt decreased by 21.2 per cent to 131.1 million US dollars from the corresponding period in last year. 

“The performance,” BoT said, “was associated with a decline in services receipts other than those from tourism activities.”

While export earnings from goods and services declined, value of imports of goods and services was 349.1 million US dollars compared to 330.5 million US dollars in the year ending September 2014.

“Goods import was 294.6 million US dollars compared with 270 million US dollars in the corresponding period in 2014, following an increase in the value of intermediate and capital goods,” the report showed.
Source: Daily News, reported from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
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