In­dian in­vestor to pour $200m into agric

The Herald (Zimbabwe) - - Central & West News - Bless­ings Chi­dakwa in Kadoma

THE eco­nomic poli­cies put in place un­der the Sec­ond Repub­lic led by Pres­i­dent Mnan­gagwa has charmed an In­dian in­vestor who has set aside $200 mil­lion for in­vest­ment in Mashona­land West’s agri­cul­tural sec­tor, which will cre­ate 5 000 jobs.

Pres­i­dent Mnan­gagwa has, through the “Zim­babwe is Open for Busi­ness” mantra, set the tone for at­tract­ing se­ri­ous in­vest­ment in Zim­babwe’s three pil­lars of the econ­omy — agri­cul­ture, min­ing and tourism.

The es­tab­lished In­dian busi­ness­man — Mr Harinder Pal Singh Ba­jwa — spent two months ex­plor­ing busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties in Zim­babwe prior to the July 30 har­monised elec­tions.

Mr Ba­jwa met Sable Chicken group chief ex­ec­u­tive Mr Sean East­wood and the Zanu-PF pro­vin­cial lead­er­ship in Chegutu to dis­cuss his im­me­di­ate in­vest­ment plans in the area.

Some of the projects are ex­pected to start at the be­gin­ning of next year, with one of Mr Ba­jwa’s in­vest­ment ve­hi­cles, Flamingo Farms, mov­ing into cit­rus pro­duc­tion in­clud­ing mango, ba­nana and potato seed.

“I want to in­vest $200 mil­lion for a start into hor­ti­cul­ture, ma­jor­ing in veg­eta­bles and or­chards,” he said.

“It will be a joint ven­ture with lo­cal farm­ers in areas like Chegutu, Chakari and Kadoma.

“In terms of em­pow­er­ing th­ese farm­ers, we will share the pro­ceeds equally af­ter ex­penses. We have land cur­rently be­ing pre­pared in Chakari.”

Mr Ba­jwa said there were also plans to set up a fruit pro­cess­ing plant in Chegutu.

“In terms of em­ploy­ment, we are tar­get­ing about 1 000 peo­ple per each farm in Chakari and we have five of them,” he said.

“At the fruit pro­cess­ing plant, we are also talk­ing of other di­rect and in­di­rect em­ploy­ment. Our prod­ucts will be ex­ported to Eu­rope and the Mid­dle East, es­pe­cially in Dubai, where we have ready mar­kets.”

The busi­ness­man said he also has plans to im­port lat­est state-of-theart agri­cul­tural in­fra­struc­ture once he fully sets up base in Zim­babwe.

Mr Ba­jwa is a renowned farmer in In­dia, who re­ceived a Hor­ti­cul­ture and Fish­ery Award in that coun­try.

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