Govt expands collateral options

THE government has come up with a collateral registry for movable assets as part of efforts to promote access to finance for businesses and individuals, Vice President Constantino Chiwenga, pictured, has said.

A collateral registry is a publicly available database detailing ownership of movable assets that can be used by borrowers to prove creditworthiness to potential lenders. 

Movable assets that can be used as collateral include livestock, poultry and household goods.

Chiwenga said the initiative would help individuals and micro, small and medium enterprises currently failing to access loans due to lack of immovable collateral required by financial institutions.

“To address collateral security constraint, the government, through the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, has taken the initiative to establish a collateral registry for movable assets to expand the range of qualifying collateral acceptable to banks.

“Through the registry, which will be publicly available, borrowers can prove their creditworthiness,” said the vice president in a speech read on his behalf by Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development Minister Anxious Masuka at the Zimbabwe Farmers Union’s 81st Congress in Gweru at the weekend.

Chiwenga added that the government has also come up with a wide range of avenues to finance agriculture.

“Additionally, the government has now re-established the Agricultural Finance Corporation (AFC), which is poised to grow the sector. The government has put in place various schemes and financing mechanisms to address access to agricultural finance.

“During the 2020/21 season, the government launched a number of supportive programmes such as the Presidential Climate-proofed Pfumvudza/Intwasa Scheme and the National Enhanced Agriculture Productivity Scheme (Command Agriculture) through CBZ Agro Yield.

“The president also recently launched the Presidential Climate-proofed Cotton Pfumvudza/Intwasa Scheme. The CBZ will also complement CBZ Agro Yield by financing over 60 000 hectares on A1 and smallholder farms,” Chiwenga said.

The 81st Annual Congress, which ran under the theme “making markets make sense,” was attended by ZFU leaders and members as well as stakeholders in the agricultural sector.