Grain farmers owed $2,7bn by GMB 

Source: Grain farmers owed $2,7bn by GMB –Newsday Zimbabwe

GOVERNMENT owes farmers $2,7 billion for grain deliveries to the Grain Marketing Board (GMB), a situation that has affected preparations for the forthcoming agricultural season.

Lands and Agriculture minister Anxious Masuka told Parliament on Wednesday that government will begin paying farmers the outstanding amounts before the end of the week after legislators pressed him to explain the delay.

“GMB would go for months to years without paying farmers. Over the past two years, government has endeavoured to pay farmers timeously. As of today, the outstanding amounts are less than seven days old,” Masuka said.

“GMB intends to pay the $2,7 billion that is outstanding to farmers for grain delivered before the end of the week. We thank Treasury for acting expeditiously in this regard.

The Lands and Agriculture minister said the private sector would also come on board to finance farmers.

He said government was in the process of reviving the Agriculture Finance Corporation (AFC) to assist in the financing of A1 and A2 farmers.

Masuka said AFC has been capacitated with tractors and combine harvesters so that farmers who do not have the capacity to purchase their own equipment access tillage services and insurance, which will then act as collateral.