By Staff Reporter
NMB Bank says its participation for the first time at the Agricultural Dealer’s and Manufacturers’ Association (ADMA) was intended to promote agricultural exports.
Speaking on the participation, NMB Bank corporate banking head Fanwell Mutogo said theyare particularly interested in helping revive the country’s horticultural sector, in addition to financing other export crops.
“Zimbabwe used to be the largest exporter of horticulture in the region. We believe the country has the potential to once again become a major exporter of horticultural products.
“A lot of the bank’s farming clients are growing blueberries for export. We are excited about their export potential and the export potential of other horticultural products,”said Mutogo.
During the 90s the Horticulture used to contribute about five percent to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) but the figure has fallen to 0.5 percent.
Among the prime destinations for Zimbabwe horticulture produce during its heyday were the European and American markets.
According to Zimtrade the horticulture sector faces a lot of challenges that include lack of capital, logistical challenges, and technical expertise.
The bank offers lease finance, as an effective way of acquiring plant and machinery without the huge capital expenditure that would be required to purchase the items outright or the need for collateral that would be required for a loan.
With lease finance, the bank purchases the equipment that the farmer requires and leases it to the farmer over a period, at the end of which the farmer can purchase it for its residual value and also offers trade finance facilities, such as letters of credit, pre and post-shipment finance and bridging finance on open accounts.
NMB provides normal seasonal finance facilities to the agricultural sector and tail end facilities to farmers who have sold their crop but not yet been paid for which enables them to meet urgent expenses while waiting for payment.-