President Lungu calls for setting up of textile mills

Sat, 22 Apr 2017 14:58:35 +0000

PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu has directed the minister of commerce, trade and industry Margret Mwanakatwe, minister of finance Felix Mutati and agriculture minister Dora Siliya to work closely to explore ways on setting up local textile mills.

And President Lungu says government will allow monitored export of maize grain this season to ensure the country is not depleted of the commodity.

Speaking at the national cotton field day in Sinazongwe district at Nzenga Irrigation farms, President Lungu said setting up local textiles mills was critical in the creation of the much needed jobs for youths.

“The PF government is encouraging the growing of other commodities such as cotton, rice and sorghum to promote agricultural diversification.

“Sinazongwe and the entire valley area is ideal for growing cotton and other crops such as sorghum, millet, groundnuts, fruits and vegetables,” President Lungu said.

He said it was the PF government’s desire that Southern province continued to produce cotton to feed the Gwembe Ginnery to create more employment opportunities especially for the youths.

President Lungu implored cotton ginners in the country to ensure that they paid farmers a fair price for their crop.

He said he was happy that North West Kooperatives agri-service had offered farmers a higher price at K3.70 per KG this season compared to last year’s K3.20 per KG.

The Head of State said he was confident that more farmers would venture into cotton growing among other crops this coming season in line with the diversification programme.

He assured the farmers that government would follow closely development in the cotton industry because of the commodity’s potential to immensely contribute to the growth of the country’s economy.

“We can not talk about enhancing agricultural productivity in the country by solely depending on rainfall.

“There is urgent need for us to explore other options such as irrigation initiatives such the Nzenga irrigation project in Sinazongwe being implemented by by NWK Agri Service in partnership with government,” he said.

President Lungu cautioned the residents of Sinazongwe to jealously guard the 1004 hectare infrastructure.

“Let us not be careless so that we avoid the boma iyanganepo syndrome,” he said.

The Head of State said the field day even was important because it served as a platform for farmers and others stakeholders in the agriculture sector to exchange ideas on new and improved technologies.

And agriculture minister Dora Siliya said what was witnessed at Nzenga farms yesterday was President Lungu’s vision that agriculture should a number one creator of jobs. Ms. Siliya said the cotton which was being farmed in Southern province should not only for exports but economically and socially benefit Zambians.


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