By Tendai Munengwa
Efforts by government to achieve sustainable smart agriculture got a major boost following the availing of about US$700 000 by the European Union to mainstream biodiversity and sound pest management in agriculture policies.
The European Union Ambassador to Zimbabwe, His Excellency Timo Olkkonen told ZBC News on the sidelines of the launch of the project Titled: Capacity Building related to Multilateral Environment Agreement in ACP Countries – Phase 3 in Harare recently that funding had been availed to enhance Zimbabwe biodiversity and pest management.
“This fund is part of our funding to the African Caribbean Pacific nations which include Zimbabwe. We are happy to collaborate with Zimbabwe towards achieving smart agriculture and health foods.
“So, EU has set aside 600 thousand Euros, which is about 700 thousand US dollars to assist Zimbabwe to mainstream biodiversity and sound pesticide management policies,” he said.
The EU funding dovetails well with government agriculture priority outcomes.
“I am delighted to officially launch the project. I would like to convey my gratitude to the EU for generously funding this project.
“The project is much in sync and is indeed aligned to our agriculture food systems transformation strategy and our food security concept of Pfumvudza which is focusing on sustainable preservation of land,” said Dr. John Basera, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement.
Meanwhile in another development described by observers as a confidence vote on the Second Republic’s re-engagement policy with the West, the European Union Investment Bank recently availed US$15 million credit to CABS Bank for investment.