The government and its partners have launched the US$2,3 million support to the beef and leather value-chain technical assistance project to boost production capacity.

The government partners in the support initiative are the Africa Development Bank (ADB) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

ADB Project Task Manager, Ms Nana Kgosinditsi said funding from the private sector has been mobilised to see the fruition of the project, with a pilot project expected to be carried out in Matabeleland North Province.

The Minister of Industry and Commerce, Dr Mike Bimha said the beef and leather value-chain intends to improve production capacity, boost employment opportunities and exports.

The two year project is expected to create markets for the local industry as the government will be able to account for beef, leather and leather products.

It is also expected to grow the national herd from the current 5.5 million to 5.8 million by end of this year.