AMA seeks to float US$50m agro bills

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The Agriculture Marketing Authority of Zimbabwe (AMA) is seeking approval to float US$50 million worth of agro bills for the purchase of maize from farmers in the 2019 marketing season.
AMA was set up by Government primarily to promote agricultural production of strategic crops such as cotton, soya beans and maize. The organisation is also mandated with promoting marketing and fair pricing of agricultural commodities and promoting contract farming through encouraging private sector participation.
Last year, AMA through the Grain Marketing Board (GMB) floated US$75 million worth of agro bills which were fully subscribed.
AMA chief executive officer Nancy Zitsanza said the bills would be targeted at securing necessary funding for paying farmers.
“As AMA, we go out into the market to issue agro bills for the purpose of financing grain procurement through the GMB. Last year we did US$75 million and this year we are targeting to issue US$50 million.
“The agro bills have certain features, which they come with for purposes of attracting investors and we have started the process of seeking necessary approvals. Once we get the approval, we then go out into the market to issue the bills.
“The bills are mainly for local grain purchase to augment the efforts of Government to secure the necessary funding to pay farmers who deliver their grain to GMB. This is opposed to foreign purchases which will be required to augment the reduction in production because we are expecting reduced crops because of the drought,” she said.

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