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Russia donates 25,000 metric tonne wheat to Zimbabwe

by Staff reporter
24 Feb 2024 at 08:10hrs | Views
ZIMBABWE has received part of Russia's 25,000 metric tonne wheat donation and an additional 10 tonnes of fertiliser.

The donation is part of Russia's 200,000 metric tonne aid to six African countries including Mali, Burkina Faso, Eritrea and Central African Republic (CAR).

Announced at last year's Russia-Africa Summit, the initiative is meant to alleviate food crises in the identified countries that have reported subdued agricultural prospects due to an El Nino effect.

"This was, in fact, the first time that such a large-scale humanitarian action had been carried out by our country," said Russia's Agriculture Minister Dmitry Patrushev said.

Zimbabwe will be getting just about 10% of its total fertiliser demands as part of the deal with 23,000 metric tonnes dispatched last year via Mozambique by Russian company Uralchem.

Speaking at Grain Marketing Board's (GMB) Aspindale Depot in Harare on Friday Deputy Minister of Agriculture Vangelis Haritatos said President Emmerson Mnangagwa will be officially handing over the donation to his ministry and GMB once all of it had been delivered.

"Everything is in order, we are very happy with what we are seeing today, and everything seems like it is going very well. We are very grateful to the Russian Federation for donating such a substantial amount of wheat stock," said Haritatos.

"The donation was 25,000 metric tonnes of wheat so we are almost there but we are expecting a few more trucks to come in from Beira and once we receive the wheat we are expecting Mnangagwa to do the official handover.

"The consignment started arriving a few weeks ago and we are only left with a few hundred tonnes for this consignment to reach 25,000. The next consignment is the MRP and the NPK, so we are almost at the end of receiving both consignments of this donation."

A wheat farming revolution has seen Zimbabwe produce almost six times what it managed ten years ago at 180,000 tonnes.

The country however continues to import wheat as its local produce cannot be used by confectioneries without being blended by imports from Russia, the Middle East and at times north Africa.

Added Haritatos: "We have had two fabulous, record-breaking seasons in the production of winter wheat where we produced substantial amounts, surpassing what the country requires.

"Only two countries on the continent managed to produce enough wheat for their respective countries and we are fortunate to be one of the two."

Source - newzimbabwe
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