The Sunday News
Michael Magoronga, Midlands Correspondent
ZIMBABWE’S relations with Rwanda are growing with the two countries committed to exploring various ways of furthering their economic cooperation and engagement as they seek to develop their economies and improve people’s lives, President Emmerson Mnangagwa has said.
Addressing delegates at his farm in Sherwood, Kwekwe during a familiarisation tour by Rwandan Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Ambassor James Musoni yesterday, President Mnangagwa said there were a number of programmes that the two countries were working on following his earlier meeting with his Rwandese counterpart, President Paul Kagame.
“I am happy that after our discussion with President Kagame the current African Union chair early this year in Addis Ababa our relations are strengthening. He is implementing his vision and showing how African countries should cooperate and improve their populations’ livelihoods,” he said.
President Mnangagwa said he was pleased that the ruling Zanu-PF and its Rwandese counterparts were fostering re-engagement and engagement efforts through a number of exchange programmes with the world.
“It is true that we have a re-engagement and engagement policy as a Government, but I am pleasantly surprised that the Zanu-PF business wing is here as represented by Minister (Sithembiso) Nyoni as well as the Rwandese ruling party as represented by the ambassador. I am briefed that they have clinched several deals between them in both trade as well as in corporate and marketing spheres. The two parties have a business agreement in trade. They are also cooperating in manufacturing as well as providing facilities in Kigali where products from Zimbabwe are marketed and they are also doing likewise in Zimbabwe,” said President Mnangagwa.
He urged farmers to embrace new technology and to be hands on in a bid to maximise production.
“For more production we need more technology to be applied on each single hectare. So far on average in terms of maize, we produce between 12 and 14 tonnes per hectare, and that makes agriculture a pillar of our economy. The next phase, for us is to go into agribusiness to process some of the goods we produce on the farm,” he said.
Ambassador Musoni said his country had a lot to learn from Zimbabwe saying technology at President Mnangagwa’s farm was a challenge to his country’s farmers.
“We appreciate that His Excellency has allowed us to visit his farm. The technology that we have seen here is really impressive and we are challenged as a country. We are looking forward to exchanging notes on such programmes as agriculture technology between the two countries,” said Ambassador Musoni.
He sung praises for President Mnangagwa for creating a conducive environment for investment through his Zimbabwe is open for business mantra, the same method that has seen Rwanda’s economy growing to becoming one of the fastest growing economies in Africa.
Ambassador Musoni said he was glad to learn that the two countries were in the process of opening embassies saying it would go a long way in improving relations between the two countries. Small to Medium Enterprises Minister Sithembiso Nyoni, Midlands Provincial Affairs Minister Larry Mavima were also part of the delegation that toured the farm.