Govt focused on reduced debt appetite – Mutati

FELIX Mutati says the government is in the Medium Term Expenditure Framework focused on prioritising its key areas, among them lowering the borrowing appetite and the levels of debt.

During the Musika and Indaba Agriculture Policy and Research Institute (IAPRI) investor meeting on opportunities for investments in Zambian fresh produce wholesale market in Lusaka yesterday, Mutati said the passion to change the lives of Zambians was anchored on the transformation of the agriculture sector.

“We know and we are persuaded that we can diversify our capability to boost untraditional exports, particularly from the horticultural sector,” Mutati said.
He said in the process, lives of the smallholders would be lifted, including minimising their frustration and pressure on the treasury.
“To continue to extend FISP [Farmer Input Support Programme], to continue to extend social cash transfer, we have to work together with you here by doing the correct things,” he said.
Mutati, the works and supply minister, said in the Medium Term Expenditure Framework, government was focused on prioritising key areas, ensuring that the country continues on a sustainable fiscal path.
“…matching the revenues that we generate as an economy with our levels of expenditure and we ensuring too that we lower the borrowing appetite and the levels of debt,” said Mutati.

And Musika executive director Reuben Banda said the  organisation was interested in the development of structured fresh fruit and vegetable market to create more opportunities for smallholder producers who were greatly disadvantaged by the non-transparent and competitive practices that tend to benefit the unregulated brokers.
“With funding from the Swedish Embassy in Zambia and the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD), Musika works to identity opportunities for investment and innovation together with its agribusiness partners and can provide grants that respond to specific requirements needed to kick-start an investment,” said Banda.

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