A new sugar silo with a capacity of 50,000 tons has been inaugurated in the port of Maputo. The $10.5 million structure is the result of a collaboration between four regional sugar associations the South African Sugar Association, Zimbabwe Sugar Sales, Swaziland Sugar Association and the Mozambican Association of Sugar Producers and takes the total capacity of the sugar storage facility in the Mozambican capital to 175,000 tons.

The expanded terminal will enable producers to be more competitive by giving them greater time flexibility in marketing their sugar and negotiating shipping rates. The additional silo also means that all four stakeholders now have their own storage facility, allowing the sugar to be separated according to country a condition for access to some overseas markets.

Together Mozambique, South Africa, Swaziland and Zimbabwe have an annual sugar production of around four million tons, of which 40 per cent is exported. This translates into foreign exchange earnings for the region of around $500 million per year. The silos expansion project in Maputo is to be seen in the context of growing economic cooperation within the Southern African Development Community (SADC), of which the four stakeholders are a part.

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