Africa key to global sustainable development: Korea

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 Elita Chikwati

HARARE – Korea has endorsed Africa as an important partner in the realisation of global sustainable development because of its abundant arable land which if fully utilised would contribute significantly to food and nutrition security globally.

This was said by Korean ambassador to Zimbabwe Cho Jaichel at the Korea- Africa Food and Agriculture Co-operation Initiative (KAFACI) workshop on non-ruminant livestock management which is being hosted by Zimbabwe.

The workshop is being attended by delegates from 12 KAFACI member states including Zimbabwe, DRC, Ghana, Mali, Kenya, Senegal, Sudan, Tunisia, Uganda, Comoros, and South Korea among others.

Addressing delegates, ambassador Jaichel said Koreans recognised the importance of agriculture and was directing its efforts to develop effective farming technologies.

“As demonstrated at the UN General Assembly held at the end of September, sustainable development which particularly African countries have emphasized is the critical development which goal which the global community aims to achieve.

“I think without considering African countries, which have lots or resources and abundant arable land, it is impossible to make progress. In particular, the development of agricultural sector as “Green industry” is the essence for the sustainable development,” he said.

He said Korea was ready to cooperate with Africa and also develop effective farming technologies.

He said Korea did not have much arable land and also received poor rains but was producing rice.

“South Korea is a mountainous area with only 22 percent arable land and less rainfall than most other neighbouring rice growing countries. The cultivating area of Korea ranks 95th in the world and now the agriculture population is less than four percent. However with an effective management and producing technology, in case of rice, the output volume of Korea ranks 15th last year in the world.

He said Korea was willing to share the knowledge and experiences with African friends.

In a speech read on his behalf by permanent secretary in the Office of President and Cabinet, Dr Washington Mbizvo, Chief Secretary in the Office of President and Cabinet, Dr Misheck Sibanda said Zimbabwe was willing to co-operate with international organisations to boost production.

He said under the new dispensation, the Second Republic had established a One Stop Investment Services Centre to enhance the ease of doing business for investors coming to establish business ventures in Zimbabwe.

“The one Stop Investment services Centre will be part of the Zimbabwe Investment and Development agency (ZIDA) and will be a precursor to the formulation of ZIDA thus bringing all investments services under one roof.

ZIDA will be established through an Act of Parliament which agency will soon be announced by President Mnangagwa soon,” he said.

He said research and development in non-ruminant livestock and the subsequent commercialisation of related research and development output would support these national aspirations.

“Our wish is that benefits should spread throughout Zimbabwe and across the continent of Africa. Africa would therefore significantly export chicken meat and eggs to such countries as China and India where demand is very high,” he said.

Dr Sibanda applauded SIRDC for its role in putting up an international collaboration framework that has resulted in KAFACI and ambassador Jaichel for actively promoting co-operation between Zimbabwe and Korea.

SIRDC chief executive, Professor Robson Mafoti said all member countries had worked tirelessly to ensure the success of livestock network.

“I wish to highlight that the first season of poultry had been laid to the production of an informative chicken production manual that teaches step by step sustainable chicken production, it is has enabled small holder farmers to spent their days in their chicken production methods so as to achieve high productivity and high quality.

“In Zimbabwe small holder farmers have become active participants in the chicken value chain,” he said.

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