The Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) has shortlisted 10 local and foreign firms out of the 14 which expressed interest in developing Nansanga Farm Block in Serenje, Central Province.
Out of the 14 bidders, three are local companies while the remainder are foreign ones, according to a press release issued in Lusaka recently.
According to ZDA communications and public relations manager Margaret Chimanse, the companies have been shortlisted for an agro-business investment opportunity in the core venture and three commercial farms in the farm block.
“ZDA announces that of the 14 companies and/or consortia that submitted application to pre-qualify for the core venture and three commercial farms on February 18, 2011, ten have been shortlisted following an evaluation process and approval by the committee of permanent secretaries on farm block development,” she pointed out.
Sable Transport Limited, Seed Co Zambia Limited and AFGRI Corporation are the Zambian companies while the rest are foreign.
These are Cookes Brothers Limited (South Africa), Polyserve Fertilisers and Chemicals (Egypt), Bonafarm Group (Hungary) and Pro Alia Investments (Mauritius). Others are Yuan Longping Hightech Agriculture of China and two United Kingdom-based companies (Chayton Capital LLP and SEA Agricultural Consortium.
The companies and consortia are expected to submit the technical and financial proposals relating to the land they have been shortlisted for. The Nansanga farm block covers an estimated area of 155,000 hectares.
This is the final bidding process and is expected to be finalised soon.
Companies not shortlisted include Equator Farms, Profert and Kapekele Investment Limited of Zambia and Scipio of Switzerland.
The Zambian government is scheduled to roll-out the farm block programme to all the country’s provinces in the long-term.
By Nawa Mutumweno