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CBZ floats agro bills

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CBZ Bank is floating $100 million Agricultural Marketing Authority agro bills to finance agricultural production for the 2011/2012 season.

The bills will be issued in multiples of $10 000 with a tenor of 360 days.

“CBZ Bank hereby invites investors including, but not limited to, pension and provident funds, insurance companies, life mutuals, commercial banks and other interested institutions as well as individuals to subscribe to the agro bills,” said CBZ Bank in a statement.

The bank floated agro bills a fortnight seeking to raise $20 million for soyabean production.

In his 2012 Budget presentation, Finance minister Tendai Biti said the agricultural sector requires at least $2 billion annually to realise its full potential.

“In this regard, the projected growth in agricultural production of 11,6% in 2012 takes account of the number of financing facilities established by government, the banking sector, cooperating partners, seed and fertiliser suppliers in support of the preparation for the 2011/2012 agricultural season,” he said.

Agricultural sector output is expected to increase next year with tobacco, maize, cotton, soyabeans and poultry being the drivers.

Biti also proposed a three-year rolling financing strategy from 2012 to 2017 in order to enhance farmers’ planning and preparedness.

“Accordingly, during the first quarter of 2012, I will be announcing the detailed financing structure of the agriculture three-year rolling financing strategy, tapping from both public and private sources,” he said.

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