• Total volumes declined by 18%
  • Export volumes decreased by 26%
  • This was due to depressed consumer spending during the period

Harare- One of the leading tobacco companies, British-American Tobacco (BAT) has recorded volumes decline during the first quarter ended 31 March 2023 due to depressed consumer spending.

Overall volumes declined by 18% while export volumes of tobacco leaf and cut rug tobacco declined by 26% due to subdued demands in export markets.

BAT is a Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (zse)- listed entity with expansive portfolio of tobacco brands, including Benson & Hedges, Dunhill, and Rothmans.

“The challenging economic environment resulted in a continued decline in consumer spending,” said the Company in a trading update.

During the period under review, the government maintained a dovish stance, slightly reducing the bank policy rates from 200% to 150% in February and 140% in March.

Despite high bank policy rates which curtailed consumer spending behaviour, the local currency depreciated at an unanticipated pace, shedding by 52% year-to-date, thus, eroding the hard-earned earnings of the citizens.

“While trading conditions are expected to remain challenging for the rest of 2023, mainly driven by macro-economic variables, the company believes that its current business strategy will deliver sustained value for its shareholders,” concluded the Company.

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