FINNISH Ambassador to Zambia Timo Olkkonen says crop rotation and irrigation makes it possible for Zambia to have several harvests a year. Ambassador Olkkonen said in recent years, Zambia had witnessed a strong economic growth and the outlook for medium and long term remains positive
Finland will have a pavilion among several others at the upcoming Agritech Expo Zambia which will again be held in Chisamba from April 12-14 for the fifth time.
“Zambia’s growing and diversifying agriculture sector offers a variety of possibilities for Finnish companies and solutions that can benefit the Zambian people. In Finland the growing season is around only 90 days a year but in Zambia, fertile soil, water resources and climate conditions favour agriculture throughout the year. Crop rotation and irrigation make it possible to have several harvests a year. This is something that really excites me,”
Ambassador Olkkonen said.
He said this year’s Finland country pavilion would feature some well-known Finnish brands that were already in Zambia.
“For example, Valtra tractors. Finland’s high-quality and innovativeness also extends to the agriculture sector. In terms of the Finnish offering to Zambia the most relevant would be for example in mechanisation, energy solutions and efficiency, research and development and processing and packaging. We Finns also always look at agriculture and forestry together and take into account the synergies between the two and the integrated land-use practices,”
Ambassador Olkkonen said according to a statement.
And Martin Botzian, the head of communication at DLG International GmbH, organisers of the German pavilion at Agritech Expo, said Zambia’s agricultural sector was exciting for German companies that sell agricultural and livestock equipment because the country had a stable policy environment.
“This means the government supports the agricultural sector and commercial farming. Farmers are willing to invest. Zambia is a good place to grow crops and there is enough fresh water for irrigation. Processing the raw crops has huge potential. The commercial farming in Zambia will generate enough surplus food to export to Zambia’s neighbours. By starting to commercialise the agricultural land you increase food security, prevent mass migration out of the country into the cities and create businesses that add value at a local level to reduce poverty,”
Botzian said the German pavilion would host companies from many fields in agriculture and explained that some were into agri machinery, animal husbandry with the consulting and constructing of barns for example, fertilisers and crop protection, storage solutions like silos or dryers, solar technology, meat processing, livestock floors, animal identification and setting up trade fairs and providing project management and consultancy services.
According to the statement, this year’s event at GART is expected to bring more than 22,000 visitors, over 270 local and international exhibitors with 3,500 VIP and large scale farmers and 150 members of the media.
“So far the country and international pavilions from France, Germany, Zimbabwe, Czech Republic, Finland and the EU have already been confirmed,” they stated.