Zimbabwe: Land Bank Milestone for Agric Sector

The Agricultural Finance Corporation has been revived and will now trade as the Land Agricultural Development Bank of Zimbabwe (LADBZ) to support the overall transformation process for accelerated development of the country.

The LADBZ will have four subsidiaries under it, including Agribank which will continue operating as it has been doing.

Announcing the board of directors for the LADBZ yesterday, Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement Minister, Dr Anxious Masuka said the bank was critical in the agricultural landscape.

“The LADBZ is a key institution which will immediately ensure there is a vibrant land bank,” he said. “Agribank will continue to do what it has been doing, but diversify into other activities, all inclusive. The LADBZ will also ensure there is a leasing company which will provide services to farmers.

“It will ensure there is an insurance aspect so farmers can walk into this institution and be able to find all the services under one roof.

“With the LADBZ, we will complete the parastatal transformation under this ministry by giving all of them live mandates aligning to the Agriculture and Food Systems Transformation Strategy, the National Development Strategy 1 Vision 2030.”

The board members are former SeedCo chief executive Mr Denias Zaranyika, Syndicate Resources chief executive Mrs Nancy Guzha, former First Mutual chief executive Mrs Ruth Ncube, Zimbabwe Commercial Farmers Union of Zimbabwe president, Dr Shadreck Makombe, Mr James Mutizwa of Chihambakwe-Mutizwa and Partners, farmer and former Zimbabwe Industry Tobacco Auction Centre (ZITAC) executive Mr Wilson Nyabonda and Ministry representative Mrs Rutendo Nhongonhema.

The chairperson for the LADBZ will be announced in due course due to administrative processes in progress.

The four subsidiaries under the LADBZ will be chaired by Mrs Nancy Guzha, Land Bank — Mr Wilson Nyabonda — Leasing Company, Mrs Ruth Ncube — Insurance Company, while Mr Godfrey Matemachani will chair Agribank.

Minister Masuka said LADBZ support the overall agrarian transformation process to expand the provision of agriculture and rural financial services across the entire agricultural value chain from communal, old resettlement and A1, A2 and large scale commercial farmers, by resuscitating the Agricultural Finance Corporation trading as land and Agricultural Development Bank of Zimbabwe by March 15, 2021.

The institution will also establish a vibrant land bank to provide financial support to all categories of farmers, supporting agricultural value chains and agro-processing entities, supporting irrigation and infrastructure development, supporting mechanisation and promoting capacity building of farmers and entities by March 31.

“The LADBZ will reform, restructure, re-model and transform Agribank to provide banking and diversified and inclusive financial services to all categories of farmers, farming entities, corporates and value addition and beneficiation entities by June 30, 2021,” said Minister Masuka.

“It will also establish the LADBZ insurance company to provide innovative, viable, affordable and cost efficient products and services to mitigate against climate induced risk disease and other risks or resilient and sustainable agricultural production across all farmer categories and value chains by June 2021.”

The board was tasked to develop sustaining financing mechanisms for the LADBZ and its subsidiaries by December 2023 and improving internal capacity and competencies to generate the requisite efficiencies for the delivery of seamless services and ensuring all objectives are met through robust strategies and plans generated and approved by July 2021.

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