As one way of fostering economic development among hard working tobacco farmers, the Minister of Agriculture Honorable Lobin Lowe, MP, has engaged and extended an olive branch to some foreign investors who have shown interest to buy Malawi tobacco.
Lowe discussed with a representative working with Philip Morris International, makers of the World best cigarettes like Marlboro, Benson & Hedges, a company that wants to start buying more tobacco in Malawi with their partners.
The Agriculture minister responded to the request from Philip Morris International that any innovation to the tobacco industry is welcomed by Chakwera led government.
“Tobacco is the largest foreign currency earner in Malawi and if the PMI innovation helps to open new markets and demand for our tobacco, as government, we will fully support them if our local scientists give it a thumbs up.” Lowe said.
Philip Morris International says has created an innovating way of treating tobacco by heating it thereby reducing health scare like lung cancer and this innovation seems to be a blessing in disguise to most impoverished Malawi tobacco farmers as tobacco prices on World market went down following some protocols of World Health Organization that restricted tobacco trade which brought misery to them.
The Protocol to Eliminate Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products is the first protocol to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC), and a new international treaty in its own right. It was adopted by consensus on 12 November 2012 at the fifth session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to The WHO FCTC (Seoul, Republic of Korea, 12–17 November 2012). The Protocol builds upon and complements Article 15 of the WHO FCTC, which addresses means of countering illicit trade in tobacco products, a key aspect of a comprehensive tobacco control policy.