Low production levels are one of Zimbabwe’s biggest impediments as the economy seeks to expand its exports, Foreign Affairs and International Deputy Minister David Musabayana has said.
Deputy Minister Musabayana made these remarks when he addressed garlic farmers in Hwedza on Tuesday.
The farmers are working with the country’s export promotion and development agency, ZimTrade, in a bid to boost the production of garlic whose demand on the internationally market has been soaring.
It is against this background that Deputy Minister Musabayana implored farmers to improve the quality and quantity of their produce as they seek to lure international markets.
Deputy Minister Musabayana told the farmers that international markets prefer dealing with suppliers who can sustain production and meet agreed quotas.
“China wanted oranges from us,” said Deputy Minister Musabayana, “but then they realised that we don’t have the capacity to meet their huge quotas.
“It’s the same thing with blueberries and indigenous chickens. The only crop that we are doing at a level that can jolt the market is tobacco. So the challenge is on us to boost production and aggregate our produce and get to a level where we can get attention of major markets,” he said.
Zimbabwe, through ZimTrade, is working to boost the country’s garlic production through bringing in small holder farmers.
In a speech delivered on his behalf last week by Zanu PF secretary for administration Dr Obert Mpofu, President Mnangagwa said crops with scope for exports have the potential to spur rural industrialisation and give impetus to the march towards an upper middle income economy by 2030.