Zimbabwe agricultural suppliers urged to improve access to finance

Aug 31, 2011

The Zimbabwean Government is urging seed and fertiliser companies to improve access to finance for farmers.

The Zimbabwean Government is urging seed and fertiliser companies to improve access to finance for farmers.

Currently, many of those working in the agricultural industry are forced to plant recycled seed if rain comes before they have been able to purchase stock, the Herald quoted Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development Minister Joseph Made as saying.

To combat the problem, the authorities want suppliers to launch credit schemes whereby farmers can agree on payment terms to acquire inputs before the 2011-12 growing season begins.

Banks and officials are also being urged to provide the Finance Ministry with the details required to release Government funding for the agricultural sector as quickly as possible.

"It does not make much economic sense for input suppliers to sit with huge stocks of inputs in their warehouses while farmers plant old seed because they have no money to buy fresh seed," Mr Made said.

A similar scheme introduced last year saw the launch of the Statutory Instrument 142 of 2010, which meant buyers poised to fund contract cotton farming had to declare their intent, thus boosting output.

The minister noted that none of the country's agricultural workers are capable of financing their operations completely on their own.ADNFCR-2976-ID-800715115-ADNFCR