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Zambia Corn Crop Defies El Nino Drought as Area Faces Hunger

  • Country to produce surprise surplus as yields increase
  • Rise will boost GDP growth that's slumped to lowest since 1998
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Zambia expects corn production to increase this year as rains improved, pushing stocks into a surplus and reversing an earlier warning that it may need to import the food staple amid an El Nino-induced drought.

Higher crop yields will help boost production to 2.87 million metric tons from 2.62 million tons last year, even with a smaller area of cultivated land, Agriculture Minister Given Lubinda told lawmakers Tuesday in Lusaka, the capital. That’s about 635,000 tons more than is required for domestic consumption in the 2016-17 marketing season, he said.