oa East African Geographical Review - The production and geographical distribution of tobacco in Zambia



This article deals with some geographical aspects of tobacco production in Zambia. Tobacco growing in this country is considered to be one of the ways of diversifying the copper oriented economy. A few figures may elucidate the dominance of copper over agricultural production in Zambia's economy. The country's total exports in 1970 amounted to 714.7 million Kwacha,* of which 681.1 million came from copper and another 22 million from zinc, lead and cobalt. The value of the main agricultural export, tobacco, amounted to 3.1 million Kwacha only, which is less than �% of the total exports.1 It is hoped that a substantial contribution to the reduction of the country's excessive reliance on mining for foreign exchange can be obtained by increasing the exports of tobacco, especially Virginia flue-cured tobacco. Subsequently, increased tobacco production is envisaged to contribute to an improvement of the standard of living in many of the rural areas, thus diminishing the impetus behind urbanization. In the present article most of the attention is given to Virginia flue-cured tobacco, which is the most important crop. Burley and Oriental tobacco will be dealt with in less detail.


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