cotton.jpgFarmers who have been experiencing difficulties in marketing and earning a fair price for their products will benefit from the extension of support  from China.

Representatives from the China National Textile and Apparel Council and a leading Chinese textile firm Sinotex United Import and Export Company are already in the country carrying out negotiations with the government.

 

Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development Dr. Joseph Made expressed hope that initiative will immensely improve cotton production in the long term.

 

“I think much more in our discussion is to strengthen cotton production and ensure that A2 farmers begin to farm cotton. As you know the bulk of our cotton was coming from small scale farmers. So we would want to see under this arrangement cotton expansion of 1million to 1.5 million hectares of cotton,” said Dr Made.

 

The Chinese are already working out modalities for an agreement which is expected to strengthen the key players in the cotton sector such as the Agriculture and Rural Development Authority, large and small farmers.

 

Minister Made said the development comes at a critical time when cotton farmers, are facing viability constraints due to unscrupulous merchants.

 

“Right now farmers are facing trouble from unscrupulous traders and biting sanctions, so we have agreed that if need be we have to re-establish parastatals that deal with farmers commodities,” Dr Made said.

 

China is a leading producer of cotton churning out 4million metric tonnes per year, in addition to importing another 3million metric tonnes of the plant which in Zimbabwe has been christened the whiter gold.