The Meat Corporation of Namibia (Meatco) has announced that Namibia is exploring new markets in west and central Africa in a quest to secure competitive and sustainable markets for beef from the Northern Communal Areas (NCAs).
In a statement issued Wednesday, Meatco said a delegation from the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Land Reform and Meatco facilitated by the Ministry of International Relations and Cooperation is visiting the African regions to engage with business communities on the prospects of exporting beef.
“Agriculture’s contribution to the gross domestic product (GDP) excluding fishing over the last five years has been just over 4 per cent. Livestock farming contributes approximately two-thirds of agricultural production, with crop farming and forestry making up the remaining third of production. Under manufacturing, meat processing accounts for another 0.2 to 0.4 per cent of the GDP. Over 70 per cent of the Namibian population depends on agriculture for a livelihood,” the statement reads.
This week, the Namibian delegation is in Congo Brazzaville, along with the Namibian Ambassador to Congo Brazzaville, Sipapela Cletus Sipapela, engaging the Brazzaville Chamber of Commerce.
These engagements are made possible through the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement signed earlier this year, which enables African states to trade and grow their economies, it adds.
Further consultations between the authorities of these countries and Namibia’s Department of Veterinary Services will continue, to agree on the conditions for certification to facilitate smooth trade between the countries.
According to Meatco’s Chief Executive Officer Mwilima Mushokabanji, AfCFTA has come at the right time “when our borders need to work together” and capitalise on trade negotiations.
“The Growth at Home strategy should work for Namibia, while high priority should be placed on unleashing the potential of the AfCFTA and more so the Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP) II, especially pillar two of the plan, economic advancement, which focuses on the enhancement of the productivity of priority economic sectors such as primary agricultural production,” he noted.
The delegation has already visited Ghana to explore opportunities for the NCA meat products.
Source: Namibia Press Agency (NAMPA)