As we approach a year since the Agriculture and Agro-processing Master Plan (AAMP) was signed into policy in May 2022, Dr Sifiso Ntombela, the chief economist at the National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC) and the deputy president of the Agricultural Economics Association of South Africa, shares some of the progress made.
“The Agriculture and Agro-processing Master Plan is the economic framework that provides growth for the food sector and agricultural sector. [It] also identifies the areas of growth and areas that need to be addressed,” Ntombela says.
What helps to address the various areas of growth is the partnerships that are built through private and governmental partnerships that continue to push the master plan forward, he explains.
“We have travelled a long way in terms of development. As you can see, it is a document that should catch the interest of the diverse stakeholders in the agri-sector.”
Development of the plan
According to Ntombela, the NAMC continues to look at ways to prioritise what is important and how to implement channels of the master plan successfully.
“The past eight months have really been a forecast of how to prioritise government resources so that we can channel them into the implementation of the master plan,” he says.
He believes that they are at a point where they can begin to monitor some of the progress, particularly around the work of the scheme development.
“The main benefit of the master plan is to expand inclusive growth which caters for all types of farmers from the smallest farmer to the largest and mega-scheme farmers operating in the domestic market,” he says.
The master plan makes provision for increasing exporting opportunities for farmers in Mzansi, he added.
Ntombela further notes that while they have been monitoring the developments, as problems arise, there is confidence to be able to either solve the problems or find solutions to mitigate the situation.
In this episode, the following is also discussed:
- Progress made; and
- Contingency plans.
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