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Tanzania: Government pledged to settle arrears to cashew nuts farmers

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The government of Tanzania on Monday pledged to complete paying cashew nuts farmers the remaining 59 billion Tanzanian shillings (about 25.6 million U.S. dollars) for the 2018/2019 season by Oct. 30.

Omary Mgumba, the Deputy Minister for Agriculture, made the promise when he opened a cashew nuts stakeholders meeting in the east African nation’s southern region of Mtwara.

Mgumba said the government was also in the process of paying 24 billion shillings to service providers as well as 9 billion shillings to producers of cashew seedlings across the country.

“I’m aware that farmers are eager to hear the government’s statement on payments of arrears for the 2018/2019. I would like to assure you that all remaining arrears will be paid by Oct. 30, 2019,” said the official.

Mgumba said more than 220,000 tonnes of cashew nuts worth 722 billion shillings were bought by the government in the 2018/2019 season, adding that 663 billion shillings had been paid to the farmers with claims amounting to 59 billion shillings still not paid.

He said during the 2017/2018 season, the government earned 575 million dollars cashew nuts, which was equivalent to total revenue collected from coffee, tea and tobacco.

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