Citizen Entrepreneurial Development Agency (CEDA) CEO, Thabo Thamane says the agency has put a cumulative amount of P3 billion in the local economy.
Thamane was delivering a speech during the Southern District Agricultural show held in Kanye recently.
“About 70 percent of this amount is in rural areas, which is an indication that it is not true that we only assist people in rural areas,” said Thamane.
According to Thamane, there has been improvement in payment by borrowers, saying 2018 was record breaking in terms of repayment.
He revealed CEDA was able to collect P516 million, beating a target they had set of P400 million, adding this was achieved during a time laden with challenges, including drought.
“It goes to show that Batswana are hungry to participate in the local economic landscape, they don’t want to be spectators.”
Thamane says in Southern District alone, the agency has injected a total of P365 million, with P200 million invested in agriculture.
“This is an indication that we mean business in agriculture,” he declared, adding that the agency also assist communal farmers having invested a total of P14 million into their projects.
Meanwhile, President MokgweetsiMasisi, who graced the show, said the recently signed Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement would further boost the agricultural sector, as it will provide locals with a market of over P1.2 billion people.
Although economists have suggested it will take some time before the benefits of the agreement can be enjoyed, Masisi noted Botswana could tap into the market by selling embryos and semen of local quality breeds.
He said this is because countries like Tanzania have around 20 million cattle with the likes of Mali boasting around 10 million cattle.