CAROLINE KALOMBE, Kasama
THE British government has invested US$5 million in potato farming in Northern Province to boost agriculture production in the region and contribute to the
country’s economic diversification programme.
British High Commissioner to Zambia Fergus Cochrane said in an interview in Kasama that Zambia has great potential to export agriculture produce in the Great Lakes region.
Mr Cochrane said his government is interested in fostering agriculture production in the Northern Province to lift people out of poverty.
“Agriculture is an area that we are interested in. In fact here in Northern Province, UKAid is investing over US$5 million dollars into a farm in a place called Katito for potato production,” he said.
Mr Cochrane said agriculture diversification by allowing export of maize will create a source of revenue for the country by taxing the export.
He said there is a recognition that aid alone is not enough to lift countries out of poverty hence the shift to development assistance.
Mr Cochrane said poverty reduction can be achieved by boosting private sector participation in the economy and that his government is working with the Zambian government through programmes such as PEP Zambia and Deepening Access to Finance.
He said the private sector participation and diversified agriculture sector is a means to poverty reduction.
“We want to develop it. So we want to do our bit to help Zambia diversify and make more of this wonderful potential in agriculture,” Mr Cochrane said.
He said this is feasible through diversification of the economy.