Zambia will export 100,000 of maize to three east African states facing a shortage, with the bulk of the grain going to Kenya, a government official said on Monday.
In June, Zambia opened talks with Kenyan grain traders for the export of maize to east Africa's biggest economy, which is looking to import maize to plug a deficit.
"We selected 24 companies, including three foreign and 21 local firms to handle the exports and they will sign the contracts this week," Agriculture Permanent Secretary Julius Shawa told Reuters on the sidelines of an investment meeting.
"They will buy the maize from the FRA and mostly export to Kenya but some of it will go to Tanzania and Burundi," Shawa said, referring to Zambia's state-run Food Reserve Agency.
He did not say how much each of the countries would receive.
Zambia this year produced about 3.6 million tonnes of maize and had a surplus of 1.4 million tonnes which was available for export, Mutati said.