USAID funding 'to boost agriculture in Zimbabwe'

Sep 16, 2011

USAID is to provide funding in an attempt to boost the agricultural sector in Zimbabwe.

USAID is to provide funding in an attempt to boost the agricultural sector in Zimbabwe.

Joseph Made, the country's Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development Minister, explained his country is to sign four new agreements with the US government agency, the Herald reports.

These will provide cash for the sector and encourage the development of more projects to support poor households in rural communities.

Mr Made explained: "The funding will not be free but on loan basis. Some of the farmers may even be asked to make down payments for the loans before they can access them."

Agricultural workers will also be able to produce surplus amounts of stock, thus boosting the availability of raw materials and increasing food reserves.

Mr Made discussed the plans following a meeting with US Ambassador to Zimbabwe Charles Ray, who claimed the country's farming industry has "unlimited potential for growth".

Agriculture accounts for almost 20 percent of the nation's Gross Domestic Product and 66 percent of its labour force are employed by the sector.ADNFCR-2976-ID-800731506-ADNFCR