Zimbabwe’s Masvingo Greenbelt Project will help to improve food security and develop the agricultural industry by providing irrigation for farms across Masvingo and Bikita districts.
This initiative, which comes after Lake Murtirikwi overflowed in early 2022, will transport water through newly-constructed canals from the Lake to large scale commercial farms in the eastern part of the district. Provincial authorities defend the project suggesting that the farms will be able to develop cash crops for export in addition to the staple crop of maize.
Lake Mutirikwi is an artificial lake which was created with the construction of the Kyle Dam on the Mutirikwi River. The lake is also used for the irrigation of sugar cane plantations.
President Mnangawa’s administration has supported the greenbelt project as part of its economic development plan to use idle water bodies to grow food under irrigation and to reduce the costly food importation bill.
Minister of State of Masvingo Provincial Affairs, Ezra Chadzamira, maintains that full exploitation of idle water bodies would help to expand the province’s GDP through agricultural growth, in line with its goal to reach a GDP of $8 Billion USD by 2030.