Since 2018, the government of Zimbabwe has approved at least 2,000 agricultural joint ventures covering up to 200,000 hectares in a bid to boost the agricultural sector.
This was confirmed by the permanent secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture, John Basera.
He was speaking at the first meeting of the Joint Venture and Investment Trust organized by the Federation of Young Farmers Clubs of Zimbabwe Trust in Harare.
“Our interest as a government is that we own the land. We need to protect the investments, the landowner and the investor to build trust in the partnership,” he said.
“Right now we have about 2,000 joint ventures approved by the ministry (of agriculture) and in terms of hectares, that’s about 150,000 to 200,000 hectares under joint ventures. We think it’s a working model, so we’re now starting to see the optimized use of land and resources in a bigger way.
“We will start to see investment flowing into the agricultural space, investment in the form of working capital, retooling and tooling in the agricultural space, mechanization in the form of irrigation modernization and development, among others.”
Basera added that Zimbabwe had the capacity to irrigate over two million hectares of land but needed the resources to harness this potential to significant advantage.
“In terms of investments, especially investments in infrastructure related to climate protection in agriculture which is so vulnerable to the effects of climate change, it is so critical because we know that climate change is a reality. and that we have to adapt as a sector and we die.
“That is why we encourage joint ventures, especially in irrigation rehabilitation and development so that we can exploit all water bodies in the country,” he said.
Some of the agricultural joint ventures include former white farmers who have returned to their land and work with resettled black farmers.