ANGOLA – Angola intends to finance private-based rice production projects for young entrepreneurs and those interested in investing in the rice sector in Malanje, the country’s basket.
The Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, António de Assis revealed the country’s intention during a meeting on the strategic vision of rice cultivation in the Songo region.
The meeting brought together members of the government, municipal administrators, and businessmen of the province, having reiterated the interest of the Executive in relaunching this crop in Malanje and in other parts of the country.
According to him, there are material and financial conditions to support these private-led projects adding that funding may arise through the Fund for Supporting Agrarian Development (FADA), the Development Project of Commercial Agriculture (PDAC), or Commercial Banking.
He stressed that this support arises from the experiences of wheat production initiatives in the provinces of Huambo, Bié, and Benguela, whose producers benefited from seeds, fertilizers, and instruments, in addition to amounts to support other expenses.
Without advancing deadlines, he said that the support will be reimbursed and the projects must be aligned with an anchor company that will have the mission of buying the rice from the producers, and this, in turn, will sell it to the rest of the country.
However, he appealed to the municipal administrations to involve the communities in the cultivation of rice, so that the intention of the Executive comes true, as well as increasing the production of rice in the country.
The intention comes after the recent move by E20 Investment, an Abu Dhabi-based agribusiness investment company, and Dubai Investments signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to develop 3,750 Ha of agricultural land in Angola with a focus on rice cultivation.
According to the deal, for 18 months, the joint venture aims to transform the land into a thriving agricultural hub, resulting in a projected production of 28,000 tonnes of rice and 5,500 tonnes (peak production) of avocados.
On the other hand, António de Assis announced the installation of an Agrarian Development Station (EDA) in the municipality of Luquembo, to monitor rice production, due to the existence of farms producing on a large scale.
He highlighted the need to know the location and identity of producers who benefit from financing, intending to easily find them in case of non-compliance with contractual clauses.
He said that the referencing of producers is necessary for issues of a legal-legal nature, in addition to stimulating productivity.
On his part, the governor of Malanje, Marcos Nhunga highlighted the agricultural potential of the province for the cultivation of rice and other food crops, adding that it was the reason the government is open to investments.