The Government has promised fiscal incentives for companies intending to invest in research and development in the agricultural sector.
Finance and Economic Development Minister Patrick Chinamasa on Tuesday told delegates who attended Seed Co’s 75th anniversary celebrations that companies should take advantage of changing global trends to invest in research and development.
He said Government is prepared to engage private companies willing to invest in R&D.
“Government is exploring possible ways of incentivising private companies that are willing to invest in R&D. My door is open and private companies should feel comfortable to come and discuss so that we come up with fiscal incentives, especially companies with viable R&D projects,” said Minister Chinamasa.
“The future of our economy depends on the development of new products as new products enhance a company’s competitiveness on the export markets.”
Speaking on Seed Co, Minister Chinamasa said the company’s research and development initiatives have complemented Government efforts in public institutions although R&D in those sectors continues to be curtailed by limited re- sources.
He said advances made by Seed Co had helped migrate the country’s agriculture from open pollinated seeds and farmers from subsistence to farming as a business.
“I am aware of the importance of research and development initiatives in the agricultural sector. The company’s efforts in this area are commendable.
“The importance of research is there for us to see particularly on the back of highly unpredictable climatic conditions and the need to promote high levels of productivity,” said Minister Chinamasa.
He said Government would continue to create conditions conducive for productive activities. Minister Chinamasa said sticking to old and outdated business models was not sustainable and successful companies were those that have invested heavily in new technology.
He, however, commended the strategic partnership between Seed Co and Limagrain, the fourth largest seed producer in the world.