Govt orders 500 000t drought relief grain

Govt orders 500 000t drought relief grain Small grains have capacity to withstand harsh climatic conditions making them key crops in the fight against hunger


Business Reporter

Government has placed orders for grain totalling 469 000 metric tonnes from the required 700 000 metric tonnes for the drought relief following the impact of the El Nino climate change. Running contracts secured by Government are with Holbud- fully delivered contract 15 000 metric tonnes, IETC, fully delivered 14 148 metric tonnes, Zdenakie, 15 212 metric tonnes delivered.New contracts include Score Holdings (Zambia) 100 000 metric tonnes, Bonero (Zambia) 10 000 metric tonnes, all commodities (Mexico) 10 000 metric tonnes, Holbud (Mexico) 110 000 metric tonnes, Hydery (Mexico) 90 000 metric tonnes, Power & Automation Tech (Zambia) 10 000 metric tonnes and Windlesham (Zambia) 10 000 metric tonnes.

The private sector is also involved in the importation of grain with a view to assist Government to mitigate against hunger.

Under the private sector initiatives, the Grain Millers Association of Zimbabwe has committed to import more than 100 000 metric tonnes monthly for both human and livestock.

In a presentation to the Second Multi-Stakeholder Consultative Meeting, Grain Task Force National Command Centre Presentation team members Air Commodore Josphat Marangwanda said private millers grain stock holding is 138 400 metric tonnes white maize.

He said in the short term Government budgetary requirement of 500 000 to 700 000 metric tonnes is $259 695 924 of which $200 million has been secured from Afrexim Bank and $46 million from the national budget.

“The Government released $1 million on March 2 2016 towards the local distribution of grain,” said Air Commodore Marangwanda.

He said three external teams were dispatched to Zambia; Mozambique and RSA, Namibia and Angola to solicit for the requisite support from the relevant governments and related institutions, engage all the actors, as well as physical inspection of facilities in the import/export value chain.

The teams also sought to establish capacity covering customs clearances, off-loading cargo from vessels and bagging, storage and security.

Yesterday’s meeting was a follow-up to the meeting held in January this year which allowed for a comprehensive overview of humanitarian needs, gaps and challenges in the 2015 /2016 drought response and initiated multi-sectoral planning for the 2016 agricultural season.

“Building on these efforts undertaken over the past two months, today’s meeting is an opportunity to firstly, take stock of the progress made in the drought response efforts, as well as discuss current sectoral priority needs, operational gaps and challenges.

“Secondly, we would like to use today’s meeting to discuss on how best to enhance coordination and intensify the implementation of multi-sectoral drought response efforts for the coming months,” UN Resident Coordinator Bishow Parajuli said in his address.

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