JOHANNESBURG - Zambia's crocodile industry faces imminent closure as the imposition of a 10 percent export duty takes its toll, the country's producers association said on Tuesday.
In a statement, the Zambian Crocodile Farmers Association (ZCFA) said local crocodile skins were prized the world over for high-end footwear, handbags and garments, but now some US$1.3 million worth of skins were sitting in cold storage because farmers could not raise the up-front money to pay the tax.
Two farming operations were closing, with another two planning to follow.
“The situation is dire,” ZCFA chairman Johann Jordan said.
“Farmers need this revenue from sales to run their farms, and the nation needs the foreign exchange we generate from these exports, but this tax is on the verge of killing the industry.”