Government with support from the World Bank has made available over 16 million US dollars to support farmers in cooperatives to address the current challenge of productivity and market linkages.
The Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry is implementing the project with the Zambia Agri-business and trade project as the lead agency.
Zambia Agri-business and trade project acting agri-business specialist CHIZA LUDAKA says over 19 million kwacha has so far been disbursed to 36 agricultural cooperatives in the targeted districts across the country.
Mr. LUDAKA says for the cooperatives to access funding, they must have been operating for a minimum of two years and be registered with the department of cooperatives at the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry.
He further says the cooperatives must have a bank account and TPIN number with a minimum of 10 members in the same value chain of aquaculture, bee keeping, cattle rearing and crop production among others.
Mr. LUDAKA and team have since embarked on sensitization campaigns to create awareness on how the funds can be accessed for cooperatives to benefit.
The programme is being implemented in Eastern, Central, Copperbelt, Lusaka and Southern provinces.