Greenbelt Authority (GBA) and Mpatsa Holdings Limited on Thursday signed a shareholding agreement to form a joint company through which the two parties will work together in implementing irrigation and livestock agriculture projects.
According to the parties, the venture is one of its kind involving a local company with great capability of contributing to the drive to escalate agriculture commercialization and large scale irrigation productivity.
GBA Board Chairperson, Wester Kosamu, said the agreement signifies the genesis of a long mile journey that will see Malawians reap the fruits of government’s investment.
“In the agreement government will pump 40 percent while Mpatsa 60 percent of investment. Adding that it is a huge project which will create many jobs for Malawians and also contributing to elimination of hunger in the country.
From the agreement a new company named Mpatsa Greenbelt Mega Farm Limited will be born.
Kosamu further said the fact that the venture is involving a Malawian company is another plus as it gives assurance that the company will serve the interests of Malawians more.
The Mpatsa Greenbelt Mega Farm Limited is expected to champion production of high value crops at Khonjeni in Thyolo and cooking oil production which will be done at Namadzi in Zomba District.
Mpatsa Holdings Limited’s Chairman, Jimmy Korea Mpatsa, said the trust that the government has given his company is already a motivation for the company to deliver.
“Operations under the new company will primarily center around producing to end hunger and earn forex for the country through exports of farm produce,”he said.
Mpatsa further said on its own, his company could not get to the required production rates that the Mpatsa Greenbelt Mega Farm envisions to see, hence need for such a joint venture.
He said: “We are a great combination, because while the Greenbelt Authority is bringing in a share into the capital of the company and their expertise in irrigation farming needed for this venture, we on the other hand, are experts in business and we expect to see this combination do the nest for the benefit of Malawians.”
Meanwhile the partnership company is expected to start growing winter maize at the 700 hectares mega farm in Khonjeni by August prior to an official launch of its works.