Forex in­cen­tive boosts de­liv­er­ies:

The Manica Post - - Front Page - Emmah Chinya­mu­tan­gira Post Cor­re­spon­dent

COT­TON de­liv­er­ies have this sea­son in­creased in Man­i­ca­land fol­low­ing Gov­ern­ment’s an­nounce­ment to make part of the pay­ment in for­eign cur­rency, Cot­ton Mar­keters As­so­ci­a­tion has said.

This sea­son farm­ers have sur­passed last year’s de­liv­er­ies with nearly 35 000 tonnes hav­ing al­ready reached the de­pots in Man­i­ca­land.

Gov­ern­ment an­nounced that it will pay 20 per­cent of the to­tal pay­ment in for­eign cur­rency.

Cot­ton Mar­keters As­so­ci­a­tion chair­man Mr Ste­ward Mubon­deri said cot­ton farm­ers have the po­ten­tial to de­liver up to 70 000.

Mr Mubon­deri said they were over­whelmed by re­sponses from farm­ers in Man­i­ca­land as de­liv­er­ies in­creased by 20 000 tonnes this sea­son.

“Man­i­ca­land has the po­ten­tial to pro­duce over 100 000 tonnes of the white gold in the next sea­son,” he said.

“We have re­ceived cot­ton from Chipinge, Rusape, Buhera and other parts in Mutare while the num­ber of farm­ers who have em­barked on cot­ton farm­ing has in­creased. Cot­ton farm­ers who used to plant one hectare are now plant­ing three hectares.

“Even­tu­ally farm­ers re­sponded pos­i­tively to the re­cent com­mit­ment by Gov­ern­ment that they will be paid party of their money in for­eign cur­rency, by plant­ing more cot­ton whose vol­ume has been con­stantly grow­ing. The coun­try needs for­eign cur­rency and cot­ton farm­ers have a so­lu­tion. The coun­try needs cook­ing oil, mar­garine, stock feeds and more em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties,” he said.

Mr Mubon­deri said they will work ex­tra hard as cot­ton farm­ers to in­crease pro­duc­tion and earn more for­eign cur­rency through ex­port­ing by-prod­ucts.

The Gov­ern­ment’s Pres­i­den­tial Free Cot­ton In­puts Scheme has gone a long way in help­ing marginalised farm­ers who were faced with high costs of in­puts and low pro­ducer prices while their yields were also be­ing af­fected cli­mate change.

“Most farm­ers have al­ready started prepa­ra­tions for the crop­ping sea­son and we look for­ward to in­creased pro­duc­tiv­ity.

‘‘We are also en­cour­ag­ing farm­ers to plant cot­ton early,” said Mr Mubon­deri.

He how­ever, be­moaned poor com­mu­ni­ca­tion net­works in some parts of the prov­ince say­ing it was af­fect­ing farm­ers when com­ing to re­ceiv­ing their pay­ments.

“How­ever there is no net­work in some ar­eas in Chipinge. Gov­ern­ment is still work­ing on in­stalling boost­ers in all ar­eas to en­sure that all farm­ers have ac­cess to net­work so that they re­ceive their money on time through mo­bile pay­ment and use it ac­cord­ingly,” he said.

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