September 19, 2023

Zimbabwe: Zim needs a smart growth strategy for the agriculture sector – UN expert

The country needs a disaggregated agricultural development plan across all sub-sectors to ensure increased private sector participation.

The United Nations specialized agency, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), specialist in agrifood systems investments and policy support Roy Machoko, said Zimbabwe does not failed to attract significant investments in various economic sectors due to the lack of plans guaranteeing returns on investment for investors.

The nation aims to reach an agricultural economy of $ 8 billion by 2025.

Macoko, speaking at the Zimbabwe Agriculture Investment Plan (ZAIP) 2 consultative workshop held in Chinhoyi last week, said the first round of the planned government plan had not yielded the desired results.

Machoko said, “ZAIP 1, which ran from 2017 and expires this year, has not had a significant impact on the agriculture and food systems transformation agenda. The strategy failed because it was not smart, it lacked precision and detail on how the country sought to achieve the desired growth.

“Numbers and assumptions were thrown around without saying how we intended to do it. FAO helps the government to put in place smart instruments and land use planning. “

He said provinces such as Mashonaland West need to harness the potential of agricultural value chains, with government playing the role of facilitator.

Countries are encouraged to plan in accordance with the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Program (CAADP), which is Africa’s policy framework for agricultural transformation, wealth creation, food security and nutrition, growth. economic and prosperity for all.

Agriculture Ministry deputy director Gutsa said agriculture determines levels or livelihoods and disposable income, hence the need to develop the sector.

The formulation of ZAIP 2, he said, would identify province-specific investment priorities to develop key products and markets.

Gutsa said the country has experienced agricultural sector growth of 36.2% in 2021 and needs to maintain and maintain the trajectory in pursuit of Vision 2030 to achieve an upper middle income economy.

In 2003, in Maputo, Mozambique, the African Union (AU) Summit made the first declaration on CAADP as an integral part of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD).