Categories: Africa

Will new regime revive agriculture in Zimbabwe?

Under the Mugabe regime, Zimbabwe’s agriculture industry has been deteriorating for many years. This was partly due to chaotic land reform, a lack of private property rights, and poorly targeted and partisan-based subsidy programmes.

The current military siege of power in Zimbabwe could be the beginning of the transformation the country’s agriculture sector needs.

READ Resolving agriculture’s transformation deadlock

According to Tinashe Kapuya, an agribusiness economist, the agriculture sector in Zimbabwe never recovered from the land reform policy initiated in 2000, and has remained subdued over the past 15 years.

For this reason, Kapuya said that the military capture of the state was unlikely to have an immediate effect on the sector.

However, he added that new leadership could result in a new vision for the sector, and could be the start of a new dispensation that redefined agriculture in Zimbabwe.

Kapuya also said that to revive the sector, Zimbabwe needed to first strengthen property rights in the country, and allow for the private ownership of land.

“This would not only promote investment, but also improve land management as well,” said Kapuya.

Current reports suggested that Zimbabwe’s former vice-president, Emmerson Mnangagwa, would lead the transitional government.

However, Kapuya said that Mnangagwa’s policies have thus far been defined by contradiction.

“On the one hand, he has reportedly shown [an] openness to markets, and was seen to be someone who would advance a more liberal integration of Zimbabwe’s economy into the global market.

[On the other hand], reports have [also presented] him as a figure that has advanced a command agriculture [socialist] policy narrative. While both are diametrically opposite, the latter could be interpreted as a positional play that was deeply etched in factional politics,” said Kapuya.

Kapuya also said that white farmers had an important role to play in the revival of commercial agriculture in the country, and that several politicians in ZANU-PF, Zimbabwe’s ruling political party, believed this.

“I think Mnangagwa will embrace white commercial farmers, but that will obviously need a new narrative that departs from Mugabe’s bigotry and racist politics,” Kapuya said.

Published by
Caxton Magazines

Recent Posts

  • Featured Home Image
  • Managing for Profit

Yield and quality determine profits, nothing else!

Costs under your control such as yield and product quality are what determine farming success. Don’t waste time on costs…

1 day ago
  • Caxton
  • South Africa
  • Use only text

Mixed reaction expected from agri sector to repo rate reduction

The decision by the South African Reserve Bank Monetary Policy Committee to lower the repo rate to 6,5%, down from…

2 days ago
  • Recipes

Carrot cake loaf with dates

This carrot cake loaf, with its delicious, zesty cream-cheese icing and chopped walnuts, is soft and full of flavours.

2 days ago
  • Caxton
  • South Africa
  • Use only text

Jobs and safety to take centre stage in the Western Cape

Western Cape Premier, Alan Winde, delivered his maiden State of the Province address on Thursday, focusing on job creation and…

2 days ago
  • Caxton
  • Use only text
  • World

Australian table grape exports reach half-a-billion mark

As the Australian grape export season nears an end, it is estimated that volumes amounting to half a billion Australian…

2 days ago
  • Featured Home Image
  • How to Crop

Fertilisation: basic principles that every farmer should know

Achieving optimal yields is greatly dependent on providing crops with the right nutrition at the right time. Understanding the role…

2 days ago