Agriculture plays strategic role in Namibia’s economy

Agriculture is of strategic importance to Namibia’s economy. This is according to Namibia’s vice-president, Dr Nickey Iyambo.

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Iyambo was addressing delegates at the Agricultural Economic Outlook conference recently held in Windhoek.

“70% of the population depends on agriculture for their livelihoods. The sector provides 27% of job opportunities,” he said.

As a result of the drought, the agricultural sector’s growth was a disappointing -6% in 2015. Iyambo said that the livestock sector’s growth had declined 2,3%, and crop farming showed a growth of only 2,4%.

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“These trends are a cause of national concern, requiring all stakeholders to collaborate in finding effective solutions,” he said.

Iyambo appealed to the members of the Namibia Agricultural Union, which consisted of mainly commercial farmers, for unity with other agri-organisations in the industry.

“We need to be inclusive to avoid conflict. Black Namibians need to become part of the economic mainstream,” he said.