The Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development, Dr. Joseph Made has expressed satisfaction over the progress made at the construction of the US$8 million South Korean-backed agriculture equipment testing plant in Hatcliffe, Harare.Work at the state-of-the-art plant which is meant to facilitate the testing of both the imported and local agricultural equipment has reached an advanced stage with engineers from the Republic of Korea now installing the machinery.
Speaking to ZBC News during a tour to assess progress, Dr. Made said the setting up of the testing plant will go a long way in improving the maintenance and servicing of newly imported tractors and old tractors as well as other equipment.
â€œAs you are aware we did a groundbreaking some few months ago and what you are seeing here is the construction of the state-of-art equipment, it will help us in testing the type of equipment that we might need to import and also the ones that we have already in the country. It is specifically for testing engines and the hydraulic systems of the tractors and other equipment to ascertain if they are fit for use and due for services or disposal,â€ said Dr. Made.
The setting up of the technological plant in Harare is in line with promoting the agrarian reforms and will benefit thousands of farmers who received tractors under the mechanisation programme launched by the Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, President Robert Mugabe.
Apart from benefiting the farmers, the new plant is also expected to provide technical expertise to engineering students studying at various institutions across the country.