People living in cities should consider venturing into agro-forestry and fisheries programmes.

This was said by the Minister of Environment, Water and Climate, Cde Oppah Muchinguri Kashiri when she officiated at the International Day of Forests celebrations held in Harare today.

“The country stands to benefit through employment creation if people venture into agro-forestry and fisheries programme. This does only ensure food security in families but cuts the country’s import bill and we would stop importing fruits from neighbouring countries,” said Cde Muchinguri Kashiri.

The Minister also said her ministry will be launching agro-forestry in communities which involves the growing of fruit trees.

Forestry Commission General Manager, Mr Abednigo Marufu said his commission is worried by the rate at which tobacco growing provinces are depleting resources although they made a significant progress in planting trees this year.

Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Forestry and Wildlife Officer, Dr Rene Czudek said the celebrations are significant as they ensure the country adheres to the six global forest goals of protecting the environment.

The International Day of Forests was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in 2012 and this year’s celebrations ran under the theme” ‘Forests and Sustainable Cities.’ Mushuma tree is the tree of the year.