Revenue from tobacco hit $129.7 million at the end of week 13 of sales after trading about 85.4 million kilogrammes (kgs), figures from AHL Group show.

During same time last year, the country sold about 104.5 million kg of all types of tobacco, realising $155.1 million.

This represents an 18.2 percent decrease in sales volume and a 16.4 percent drop in seasonal earnings.

While attributing the overall drop in sales and volumes to the Covid-19 pandemic, Tobacco Commission Chief Executive Officer, Kaisi Sadala, said the decline in tobacco supplies on the contract market could be attributed to a number of factors.

This season tobacco output is estimated at 154.6 million kgs which is 6.6 percent lower than last year’s 165.6 million kgs.

By far, tobacco remains Malawi’s top foreign exchange earner, although its share has been falling sharply in the past ten years in response to changes in prices and weather conditions, and most recently, due to the global anti-smoking campaign championed by the World Health Organisation.

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