3 July 2017. In the Seventies, Angola was one of Africa’s leading farming nations. But years of civil war took its toll on the sector which only represents 10% of the country’s GDP today.

Since the end of conflict fifteen years ago, a major effort has been made to boost agriculture – a vital necessity when you consider that Angola needs to import 80% of its consumer goods.

According to economic experts, Angola has the potential to become one of the leading agricultural countries in Africa. It boasts 58 million hectares of arable land – the equivalent of a country the size of France. The problem is that only 10% of it is exploited. This is mainly due to poor irrigation.

For this edition of Focus, the team visited Angola’s largest farm. Located 1,400 metres in altitude, on the highlands of South Kwanza province, it covers 10 000 hectares. Only one third of that is being used for now, but the fifty varieties of goods produced – ranging from fruit and vegetables to milk products – yield an annual turnover of 5 million dollars.

Large, privately-owned farms like this one only represent 15% percent of Angola’s agribusiness, but half of its farmed land.

“Angola has excellent conditions for agriculture. There are many different micro-climates, there is a lot of arable land, a lot of water. We have some of the best conditions in the world for farming… Our big problem today is the workforce,” João Macedo, Grupolider administrator.

This post was originally published at PAEPARD and has been republished with permission.

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