BAT Zimbabwe, a listed cigarette manufacturer, says the continued investment in simplification of the business model will enable the company to deliver sustained growth and contribute to the socio-economic development of the country.
Group chairman, Mr Lovemore Manatsa, said the company’s journey is premised on a transformational journey anchored on building a better tomorrow by reducing the health impact.
“We are confident that our continued investment in the simplification of our business model, our growing consumer-centric brand portfolio, and our winning culture will enable us to deliver sustained shareholder value and contribute to the socio-economic growth and development of the country,” he said in a trading update for the nine months to September 30, 2023.
He said that with sustainability at the forefront and center of the company, the transformation is underpinned by the business’s Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) priorities.
For the period under review, the company’s cigarette sales volumes declined by 7 percent compared to the same period in the prior year due to the impact of the challenging environment on consumer disposable incomes.
However, despite the volume decline, the company recorded a 120 percent growth in net turnover as a result of strategic pricing decisions during the period under review.
Meanwhile, BAT said as of June 2023, it registered US$15,7 million in blocked funds with the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) in respect of outstanding dividends and foreign suppliers.
The company said that following the registration of the blocked funds, it transferred $15,7 million to RBZ to allow settlement of the blocked funds.
Consistent with the blocked funds guidelines provided in the Exchange Control Directive RU28 dated February 21, 2019 and Exchange Control Circular No. 8 of July 24, 2019, companies are still registering their blocked funds.
In line with the provisions of the February 2019 monetary policy statement on settlement arrangements for these blocked funds, RBZ is still working on an appropriate instrument to facilitate the settlement of the registered blocked funds.
“Management has continued to account for the outstanding blocked funds at a rate of US$1:ZW$1, and a receivable of $15,7 million was recognized for the amount transferred to RBZ for the registered blocked funds,” the company said in its interim financials to June 30, 2023.
BAT is the leading tobacco manufacturer in Zimbabwe by market share, and BAT Zimbabwe is part of the British American Tobacco Group of Companies and has been operating in Zimbabwe for over 80 years. – Herald