November 10, 2015
On November 9, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) signed a grant agreement (G/A) with the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe to provide grant aid of up to 1.791 billion yen for the the Project for Irrigation Development for Nyakomba Irrigation Scheme.
The rainfall in Zimbabwe is concentrated in the rainy season, which provides 100 to 200 millimeters of precipitation per month from November to April but decreases significantly during the dry season from May to October to no more than 50 millimeters per month. Because of this considerable difference, irrigation plays a critical role in providing a stable supply of water for agriculture. Of the 4.3 million hectares of agricultural land, however, only about 200,000 hectares are under irrigation, and a mere 35,000 hectares of that irrigated farmland are cultivated by small-scale farmers who produce the country’s staple crops. Given this background, further developing irrigation for small-scale farmers is a priority to meet the increasing demand for food.
This project will improve and construct irrigation facilities in the Nyamkomba Irrigation District in Manicaland Province, where small-scale farmers rely on less than 600 milliliters of natural rainfall per year, so as to provide a stable supply of irrigation water to the target area, thereby improving the agricultural production of small-scale farmers in the area.
In addition to this project, JICA’s efforts in Zimbabwe include dispatching irrigation development and management experts to Zimbabwe since 2012, and providing technical cooperation for irrigation development, maintenance and operation to the Ministry of Agriculture, Mechanization and Irrigation Development, as well as technical support for general rural development.