‘Foreigners are free to engage in poultry farming’
April 28, 2013 by
By CHUSA SICHONE
THE Poultry Association of Zambia (PAZ) executive manager Mathews Ngosa has said there is no law in Zambia which prevents foreign nationals from engaging in poultry farming.
Mr Ngosa’s remarks come in the wake of concerns raised by some local poultry farmers on the influx of Chinese nationals engaging in the poultry industry.
“A poultry farmer is a poultry farmer regardless of where they come from and our laws do not segregate who a poultry farmer should be,” Mr Ngosa said.
“There is no specific definition of a poultry farmer, it doesn’t say a poultry farmer should be Zambian or Chinese or whatever, it just says a poultry farmer, so it’s a very difficult question to answer because it’s not supported by any legal framework,” he said.
Mr Ngosa said PAZ had not received any complaints from local poultry farmers against Chinese involvement in the business, charging that those complaining were doing so probably because they were outdone by their foreign counterparts.
He said the Chinese farmers relied on turnover and enjoyed the economies of scale because they normally not start with a few chicks, but may start with 3,000 and as bulk buyers, they enjoyed discounts, which also reduced their costs of production.
Mr Ngosa said Chinese nationals were very competitive on the market, a situation which disadvantaged small-scale farmers who may produce as little as 100 chickens at high cost.
He said the other difference between a Chinese and Zambian poultry farmer was that the former went into the market based on profitability on turnover while the latter produced less than 1,000 birds aimed at making a profit per batch.
“So when they are both in the same market, a Chinese will actually outplay the Zambian farmer and I think that should be the basis of the complaint.
“But as an association, all we can do is to begin to train our farmers to start looking at poultry as a business because majority of our small-scale farmers do not treat poultry as a business and some of them don’t even have records,” he said.
He said PAZ had undertaken a deliberate step to train poultry farmers in entrepreneurship skills and market development in Eastern Province on a pilot basis and hoping to roll out the programme to other provinces after evaluating the first phase.Courtesy:Times of Zambia
Published: Zarai Media Team
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