Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

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Agribank avails $10m for horticulture

Agribank avails $10m for horticulture

The Agricultural Development Bank of Zimbabwe (Agribank) says it is offering horticulture farmers working capital as well as loans to acquire assets amounting to $10 million to promote horticulture production.

Zimbabwe produces several horticultural products including flowers, fruits, vegetables, herbs, spices, essential oils and tree nuts.

Most of these products are exported to European markets including the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Portugal and France.

Agribank said the facility attracted an interest rate of up to 10 percent per annum with a tenure of up to 12 months for working capital and up to three years for capital expenditure.

Produce being targeted include citrus, bananas, avocados, apples, pears, macadamia and pecan nuts, paprika, gem squash butter-nuts, sugar snaps and peas.

“Agribank is actively promoting horticulture production by availing appropriately priced financing for horticulture producers,” it said in a statement.

Zimbabwe exported horticultural products worth $61,42 million to the European Union in 2015, up from $53,5 million in 2014.

In 2012, exports to the EU stood at $38,5 million, rising to $52 million in 2013.

Early this year, Zimbabwe and the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development signed a $20 million loan agreement to finance an intensive citrus irrigation project in Beitbridge, Matabeleland South province.

The project, the Zhove irrigation scheme, is expected to benefit 5 000 households through the development of irrigation infrastructure for citrus production on 2 520 hectares of land.

Zimbabwe, which heavily depends on its agriculture industry, has over the past few years seen agricultural production dropping on the back of changing weather patterns, unreliable rains as well as other production bottlenecks. — New Ziana.


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