News & Media

Upscaling Farmers' Productivity Through Training And Mentorship

Agribank established an Agri Advisory Services (AASD) Division for training and mentorship of farmers, effective April 2017, in line with its five year strategic plan.

The direct objective of this division is to transfer skills and knowledge as well as change attitudes towards farming in order to increase productivity and promote business relationships between clients and the Bank. The ultimate objective is to transform agricultural interventions into viable business enterprises. Further, the services have a special focus of orienting farmers towards adopting appropriate climate resilient strategies and agro-processing practices, and thus, ensuring national food security and sustainable livelihoods.

The following services in support of up-scaling farmers’ productivity capacities are offered under the AASD:

A. Training

Opportunities will be presented to clients and non-clients to attend various platforms for up-scaling their knowledge and skills-base. These platforms comprise of the following:

  • Evening lectures: A complementary platform to keep farmers in urban areas informed and equipped with farm management skills.
  • Excursions: To expose identified clients and non-clients to best farming practices, thereby enhancing their understanding of the commitment and sacrifices one has to make to become productive and profitable.
  • Farmers’ information days: to ensure information dissemination to as many farmers as possible and used by industry role-players and farmers as platform to network.
  • On-farm research trials: to demonstrate and create awareness on various appropriate farming practices to influence informed decision making.
  • Farm mapping: to produce farm maps to aid farm planning and management.
  • Topic-specific training events: provided over an extended period, between two to five days to allow farmers to gain a deeper understanding and ability to demonstrate skills, knowledge and attitude towards targeted aspects of farming. Training packages may be arranged in conjunction with other specialized agricultural training providers.

B. Mentorship

Identified clients will be offered a chance to receive mentorship free of charge but must be willing to sign a Mentorship and Training Agreement to demonstrate their commitment to farming productively. Such clients will be attached to a mentor based on the location or operational zone of the mentor so as to maintain regular contact for personalized advice and guidance based on the client’s needs.

Mentoring is based on commitment, and a mutual trust relationship between the mentor and the client (mentee) for it to be effective. This mentorship component uses two approaches when engaging the clients for intervention; one is the “individual client mentoring” (one-on-one) where there is personalized transfer of skills and knowledge between the mentor and the client, based on the client’s own needs and circumstances. The other approach is the “client group mentoring” where clients in the same farming area or in close proximity to each other, form a group to be mentored as one study group. This group approach promotes and enhances support networks, sharing experience, and exchange of skills and knowledge amongst clients.

To intensify and accelerate knowledge transfer, information on upcoming events, farming tips and material used for training purposes amongst others will be available on the Agribank website: under the AASD link and a series of articles on best farming practices will be regularly published in local newspapers.

This article is compiled by Mrs. Elaine Smith, Manager Agri Advisory Services Division at Agribank.

Issued by:
Marketing and Communication Division

For enquiries, kindly contact the Marketing and Communication Division at:
Tel.: 061 2074332
Fax: 061 2074206

Selection is critical to optimal livestock performance

Every livestock farmer should strive for optimal productivity while keeping the costs of production in check. The production efficiency on any livestock enterprise is directly linked to the efficiency of livestock selection. In order to maximise productivity, a livestock farmer should establish breeding objectives and goals, and implement a selection process that will meet his/her objectives. The purpose of livestock selection is to improve herd or flock productivity, meet market demands and increase farm income. There are several factors that hinder livestock improvement, which amongst others include:

  • Costs of breeding materials: expensive breeding bulls, rams, cows, ewes, etc.
  • Uncontrolled breeding practices: no selection, in-breeding, delayed castrations and no breeding camps.
  • Absence of records: with no records, it is difficult to trace or monitor livestock performance. Important information to track includes: birth weight, pregnancy, weaning weight, market weight, calving intervals, etc.
  • Skills/knowledge and information gap: some farmers do not adopt contemporary livestock management practices. Some also do not have the right information and skills to make a success of their farming enterprises.
  • Climatic/environmental conditions: harsh conditions such as droughts, floods, and extreme temperatures negatively affect livestock performance physiologically and physically.

Selection is critical to optimal livestock performance, and the objective is to retain and maintain superior breeding animals that will pass the most desired traits onto future generations. To achieve that, three common approaches can be used in order to help the farmer make desired and well-informed decisions. These are;

  1. Visual assessment (phenotypic): this type of selection is based on descriptive standards set to identify an ideal animal based on its physical soundness, e.g. body conformation, posture (e.g. legs, neck, back, and head), udder and testicle size and placement, etc. For example, if an animal is observed to have weak legs (unstable) or sickle hocks, then it is not selected for breeding but culled or removed from the herd.
  2. Genetic assessment (genotypic): This assessment is based on known inherited characteristics which are influenced by an animal’s genotype. This is done by genetic evaluation methods such as Estimated Breeding Value (EBV) or Source: Expected Progeny Difference (EPD) amongst others. . The use of these methods is based on statistical formulas to predict if an animal is able to pass on the most economically important traits such as growth rate, carcass quality, reproductive efficiency, parasite resistance etc. The difference between the two is that EBV estimate individual animal breeding value whereas EPD estimate the Individual animal’s progeny (offspring) breeding value. Farmers can always obtain such estimates from livestock stud breeders associations (
  3. Classing and culling (visual and history): this is visual assessment of the animal, and the use of its performance history (e.g. calving intervals, abortions, complications at birth, etc.). For example, a cow on average should have a calf every year (365 days and less), but if it starts delaying and have longer intervals between every calf, then it can be selected and classed as a low or non-producer, thus, culled for market.

For any animal type or breed, a farmer should take into account the environmental conditions and his/her management ability. On that, what is expected is a productive and adaptive animal, and the management should be able to meet the animal requirements in terms of health and nutrition, and general animal welfare practices.

This article is compiled by Mr. Erastus Ngaruka, Technical Officer within Agribank’s Agri Advisory Services Division.

Issued by:
Marketing and Communication Division

For enquiries, kindly contact the Marketing and Communication Division at:
Tel.: 061 2074332
Fax: 061 2074206

AGRIBANK signs livestock financing Memorandum of Understanding with the Namibia Development Corporation (NDC)

Agribank and the Namibia Development Corporation (NDC) have signed a one year Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Wednesday, 2 August 2017. In terms of the MOU, Agribank will finance the purchasing of female breeding livestock by farmers in the Northern Communal Areas (NCA) from the NDC’s Kavango Cattle Ranch (KCR).

To ensure wider benefit to farmers, the MOU provides that the number of cattle to be financed through this financing agreement will be limited to 15 head of cattle per client. The purchase price of the cattle shall be either 80% (eighty percent) of the market value as per weight class, which value is based on the prices obtained at the Grootfontein auction in the immediately preceding month, or a fixed rate of N$20 per kilogram, whichever is the higher.

Financing will be subject to Agribank’s credit policy and upon approval final livestock selection will be done between NDC and the client. The ownership of the chosen livestock will pass on to the client and the animals will be released into the custody of the client. NDC will then issue the final invoice to Agribank for payment. Such payment will be made directly to the NDC.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Agribank Chief Executive Officer, Sakaria Nghikembua, noted that the MOU is just one of many initiatives that the Bank has taken to widen the access of communal farmers to financing.
“As the Agricultural bank, we have a duty to ensure inclusivity so that we can make a bigger developmental impact in our country. Extending financing to farmers in the NCA will no doubt improve their production output as food security at a household level is one of the expected outcomes of the socio-economic development pillar of our strategic plan.

It is therefore imperative that we develop ways and means to cater for this distinct segment of our market”, Nghikembua noted.

The Acting Managing Director of NDC, Pieter de Wet, echoed Nghikembua’s sentiments and reiterated that as development partners accountable to the same sole shareholder, this effort of leveraging synergies could not have come at a more opportune time when excellence is expected to take centre stage in agricultural production.

The NDC’s Kavango Cattle Ranch is located just above the Veterinary Line, with corridor status, and has been operating for more than 20 years focusing on beef production. “It is therefore only prudent that NDC participates in initiatives aimed at supporting communities in its areas of operation. Given the quality of animals produced at KCR, we are confident that sharing our top breeds with farmers in the NCA will go a long way in infusing quality genetic material in the northern regions”, de Wet stated.

According to him, the partnership between Agribank and NDC gives real meaning to the empowerment of people at grass-roots level and that hitherto excluded sectors of the community will now be afforded an opportunity not only to enjoy ease of access to funding at affordable rates but also to acquire quality breeding stock for improved agricultural output.

AGRIBANK catalyses the transformation of agriculture in Namibia

Agribank is focussed on catalysing the transformation of agriculture in Namibia. The Bank plans to do this through inclusive lending where renewed emphasis is placed on emerging and communal farmers as well as improving service delivery efficiencies with specific focus on loan process timelines. This was revealed by Sakaria Nghikembua, the Chief Executive Officer of the bank, at its first ever stakeholder engagement dinner held in Rundu on Thursday, 22 June 2017.

Nghikembua further listed value addition financing that will support economic growth and employment creation as key milestones towards transforming the agricultural sector. Agribank furtherplans to enhance agricultural output through training and mentorship programmes and has therefore established its own specialised Agri-Advisory Services Division within the bank from 1 April this this year. Nghikembua made the remarks during the dinner where the bank shared its strategy and focus areas with key stakeholders while receiving feedback through mutual interactions.

At the event, Agribank’s Board Chairperson, Terttu Uyuni, stated that at the heart of Agribank’s strategy are the key pillars of customer focus, financial sustainability and socio-economic transformation, amongst others. The Agribank Chairperson explained that the bank is focusing on customers because “we need to understand their needs, the challenges they face as well as the opportunities available to them. Financial sustainability requires us to grow our loan book, manage our expenses prudently and ensure timely loan repayments to the bank.” She reiterated that the Board and Management have a duty “to manage the bank in a sustainable and inclusive manner so that we can make a wider developmental impact in our country.”

According to her, the socio-economic development pillar of the bank’s strategy asserts the principle that, as a national development financing institution, Agribank needs to be inclusive, adding “It is critical that we devise appropriate strategies to reach out to communal farmers, who have previously benefited only in a limited way from our loan products and support services. The recent launch of the no-collateral loan product for salaried employees supports this strategic aspiration.”

Uuyuni also amplified the statement by Nghikembua on the bank’s catalytic role in the transformation of agriculture by providing innovative and affordable financing solutions to Namibians so that they can produce for more for themselves and the country; as well as earn foreign currency for the country through exports. “By taking advantage of our agro-processing financing, our citizens will not only be able to add value and grow the economy, but they will also provide jobs, secure livelihoods, eliminate poverty, restore people’s dignity and create prosperity for all Namibians”, she stated.

The Agribank chairperson further noted that for long, Agribank focused on funding primary production activities. With Government’s emphasis now on value addition and growth-at-home, the bank has realigned its strategy to ensure that it also plays its part in the financing of value addition activities in the agricultural space.

“It is against this background that the Board approved the agro processing loan product which will add value to basic agricultural produce, create employment and help expand production in support of economic growth. The bank therefore invites clients with bankable ideas to talk to us, so that we can guide them through the necessary processes to realise their dreams of agricultural value-addition.”

At the occasion, the Governor of Kavango East Region, Honourable Dr Samuel Mbambo, who was the guest of honour, pledged his support towards the full implementation of Agribank’s strategic plan so that it can deliver on its mandate to ensure that there is a bigger developmental impact in the country.

Dr Mbambo challenged small scale, as well as commercial, producers in his region and beyond, to step up their game and set up factories to manufacture Namibia’s own tomato sauce and process other produce into value-added products.

“As a country, we are currently importing these most basic products, but if we organise ourselves and take advantage of this facility by Agribank, we should be able to penetrate this market and make a dent in our quest for food security and economic diversification,” the Governor concluded.

The Agribank stakeholders’ dinner was attended by both Governors of the Kavango East and Kavango West Regions, the Mayors of Rundu and Nkurenkuru as well as senior government officials and key clients of Agribank in the two regions.


Issued by:
Sakaria Nghikembua
Chief Executive Officer

For enquiries, kindly contact the Marketing and Communication Division at:
Tel.: 061 2074332
Fax: 061 2074206

We are ready to listen to our individual clients

Agribank chief executive officer, Sakaria Nghikembua, has assured the Namibia National Farmers Union (NNFU) that the bank is ready to listen to individual clients who are prepared to engage it in order to make arrangements to repay their debts. Nghikembua stated that the bank has always been ready and continues to listen to numerous clients who visit Agribank on a daily basis to discuss their challenges with a view to enter into credible, fair and practical arrangements to settle their outstanding arrears. “Every client has a unique situation and we cannot, as a bank, discuss individual clients’ situations in a group. We are glad that a number of our clients have already visited our offices or those of our appointed debt collectors, in this regard. We have a responsibility to ensure that the bank is financially sustainable and the debt collections initiative is just but one initiative that the bank is implementing in pursuit of the financial sustainability objective.”

The Agribank chief made the remarks at a stakeholder engagement session with NNFU, which represents communal farmers throughout the country. The objective of the engagement session was, amongst others, to share the key milestones achieved by the bank over the past nine months, highlights of the Bank’s 5-year strategy and its focus for the future.

At the occasion, NNFU Board member and Councillor of the Aminuis Constituency, Peter Kazongominja, expressed satisfaction with the information presented at the session, which contextualizes the bank’s strategy and the rationale for the arrears collection initiative. According to him, many farmers are battling with the effects of the recent drought and low livestock levels. As a result, some farmers adopted an antagonistic attitude towards the bank but he assured the Agribank team that NNFU will continue to spread the message to its members. “I can assure you that my message to our members will be to urge them to visit Agribank offices as individual clients to make suitable arrangements since clients are individually liable to settle their outstanding debts,” he stated.

On his part, NNFU Executive Director, Mwilima Mushokabanji, reiterated that lack of information by communal farmers sometimes lead to anger and frustrationfrustrations, but that once the relevant information is shared, the farmers understand and appreciate the context of decisions affecting them.

Mushokabanji invited the bank to attend its annual congresses as well as regional farmers' information days to share information about its operations and activities. He further applauded Agribank for introducing the no collateral loan product for communal farmers, stating that it is long overdue and a huge boost for communal farmers in the country.

NNFU was represented by its Executive Director, Executive Board Members Sirkka Iileka and Kazongominja as well as Beata Xulu, the NNFU’s Program Manager.

View Doc

Agribank Launches No Collateral Loan Product

Agribank has launched a revolutionary “No Collateral Loan Product” in Oshakati on Friday, 28 April 2017. The no collateral loan product is in line with the Bank’s strategic plan; and responds to the need to be inclusive of all farmers country-wide, especially those in communal areas who do not have access to conventional collateral. The product therefore reaches out to communal farmers in a tangible and measurable way.

The product is targeted at salaried communal farmers who genuinely do not have fixed property in a proclaimed urban environment. Speaking at the launch, Michael Iyambo, the Vice Chairperson of Agribank’s Board of Directors, explained that Agribank continues to provide financing for agricultural purposes against mortgage collateral and/or fixed term investments. However, this “excludes the communal farmer who might actually also have the ability to repay his or her loan, but lacks convention collateral.”

“As a Bank, we decided to address this gap whilst reasonably mitigating our lending risks. Instead of paying once-a-year, the client will repay the Bank monthly. This makes it easier for clients to pay as they are now paying smaller amounts more frequently rather than paying a bigger amount once a year”, Iyambo explained. He also noted that instead of paying via bank debit orders, Agribank will deduct via payroll to enhance the collections success rate. Credit life insurance has been added to the product to ensure that the Bank gets paid in the event a client passes on whilst still owing on the loan. This way, too, the client’s family have peace of mind as the Bank will not claim anything against the deceased client’s estate.

Iyambo further revealed that Agribank decided to support the funding of agro-processing industries in order to add value to basic agricultural produce, create employment and expand production in support of economic growth. Agro-processing, which is a form of secondary production, means at a basic level that meat can be processed into other products; beans can be processed and tinned; milk can be turned into butter and produced on a bigger scale; maize and mahangu grains can be milled and processed into flour, and so on. Iyambo further noted that “value-addition will help uplift the contribution of agriculture to our country’s gross domestic product, which has been dwindling over the past 10 years.” He therefore invited prospective clients with good business plans in agro-processing to submit such plans to Agribank for consideration.

At the same occasion, Agribank Chief Executive Officer, Sakaria Nghikembua, stated that it is strategically imperative for Agribank to be inclusive and reach out to communal farmers as this increases food production at the household level; contributes to household-level food security; sets the stage for graduation into commercial farming, and contributes to GDP and economic transformation, while also furthering the Bank’s mandate.

Nghikembua went on to explain that no-collateral loans would range between N$5,000 and N$500,000 and can be used to purchase seasonal inputs, livestock, agricultural machinery; as well as finance water and power infrastructure for farming, fencing materials, tractors and other farm vehicles, amongst other things.

The loan is repayable over a period of 12 to 54 months, with the key qualification requirement being that the borrower’s employer must sign a payroll deduction agreement with Agribank before their employees can qualify for consideration. Disbursements are made directly to the suppliers of goods and services. The Agribank CEO stated that the no-collateral loan product is a step towards the Bank’s strategic objectives of catalysing transformation of the agricultural sector in Namibia. Nghikembua concluded by reiterating that Agribank is committed and ready to play its role in the economy.

Issued by:
Sakaria Nghikembua
Chief Executive Officer

For enquiries, kindly contact the Marketing and Communication Division at:
Tel.: 061 2074332
Fax: 061 2074206

Debt take over

Agribank lifts moratorium on taking over of agricultural debts from commercial banks

In June 2016, Agribank placed a moratorium on providing loan funding to clients who wanted to move their agricultural loan accounts from commercial banks to Agribank. This move was necessary to gain an enhanced understanding of the nature of the debt being taken over and to appropriately re-configure the Bank’s systems to accommodate the debt take-over product. The moratorium has now been lifted, effective 31 March 2017, which means clients who are currently with commercial banks can again approach Agribank to move their loan accounts over.

In the meantime, Agribank has re-configured its information technology systems to improve its capability to accurately analyse and monitor the performance of these loan accounts.

Commenting on this move, Agribank’s Chief Executive Officer, Sakaria Nghikembua, stated that the lifting of the moratorium was a strategic imperative in efforts to grow the loan book of the Bank. Nghikembua reiterated that applications received during the moratorium period and not processed will be considered in order to ensure fair treatment of all clients.


Issued by:
Sakaria Nghikembua
Chief Executive Officer

For enquiries, kindly contact the Marketing and Communication Division at:
Tel: 061 2074332
Fax: 061 2074206

View pdf

Agribank establishes Agri advisory services for farmers

Agribank has established a training and mentoring division for farmers within the Bank, effective 1 April 2017. The new division, called the Agri Advisory Services (AASD), follows the successful completion of a seven year partnership between Agribank and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) for the implementation of the Farmers’ Support Project (FSP). During this period, a total of N$58.6 million was spent on FSP, of which Agribank contributed N$28.4 million, while the remaining N$30.2 million was contributed by GIZ.

The objective of the AASD, which was established in line with
the Bank’s five year strategic plan, is to transfer skills as well as enhanced knowledge and attitude towards farming as a business in order to increase productivity and promote business relationships between clients and the Bank.

AASD will focus on the provision of personalised mentorship in livestock, crop and horticulture production to Agribank clients in all 14 regions of Namibia. The mentorship and demand-driven training will be offered by technically qualified employees whilst mentorship will be provided by well-experienced farmers to guide qualifying farmers towards an increased understanding of productive farming and applying new skills and knowledge that allow them to improve their livelihoods. The training will cover topics such as rangeland conditions and utilisation, breeding and reproduction, marketing, animal health, record keeping, farm infrastructure management, financial management, animal husbandry, dry-land crop production and horticulture planning, improved irrigation practices and integrated pest management.

The establishment of the Division is in line with the Bank’s mandate to play a pivotal role in Namibia’s agricultural sector to create wealth, provide jobs and contribute towards food security.

In this way, Agribank is contributing towards the country’s long-term economic objectives - as outlined in Vision 2030, the National Development Plans and the Harambee Prosperity Plan.


Issued by:
Sakaria Nghikembua
Chief Executive Officer

For enquiries, kindly contact the Marketing and Communication Division at:
Tel.: 061 2074332
Fax.: 061 2074206

View pdf

Agribank lauded for engaging Farmers Unions

The Namibia Emerging Commercial Farmers Union (NECFU) and the Namibia Agricultural Union (NAU) applauded Agribank for engaging them on key strategic issues. These sentiments were expressed during a stakeholder engagement session initiated by Agribank with the Unions.

Towards the end of 2016, Agribank approved its new Strategic Plan to guide the operations of Agribank for the next five years. The Bank is committed to carrying out its mandate and creating sustainable stakeholder value through regular engagements in a way that fosters mutual understandingIt is against this background that the Chief Executive Officer, Sakaria Nghikembua, held a stakeholder engagement session with key farmers’ unions this week.

The objective of the engagement session was amongst other things to share the key milestones achieved by the Bank over the past seven months, the operating environment, highlights of the Bank’s strategy and its focus for the future.

Detailing progress on the arrear collections strategy which intensified as from February this year, Nghikembua told the unionists that two external debt collecting companies in the names of RedForce and United Africa Group were appointed to assist the Bank with arrear collections.

He noted that the response is very positive as many clients have already contacted either the Agribank offices or those of the contracted debt collecting agents to make arrangements, whilst others have made down payments on their arrears. “We already have commitments-to-pay from customers in excess of N$20 million. This amount increases daily as new repayment agreements are made with customers. We now also have on board the second debt collector and are busy handing over a portion of the arrears book to them before they start interacting with clients. We are confident that we will see good repayment inflows in 2-3 months’ months”, stated Nghikembua.

Nghikembua reiterated that Agribank can only be sustainable if money owed to the Bank is repaid to enable it to lend it further and have a bigger developmental impact as per its mandate. “The clients who are ignoring or refusing to cooperate with the duly appointed debt collectors are doing it at their own risk. These agents have been appointed and are acting fully on behalf of the Bank. We are fully aware that clients will not necessarily be able to repay all their arrears at once, nor do we expect them to. What we do expect is that suitable arrangements should be made to settle the debts over a reasonable period of time”, the Agribank chief stated.
On their part, both NECFU and NAU expressed appreciation to Agribank for recognizing them as key stakeholders as is evident through engagements of this nature. The unions further stated that they are now clear about the direction that the Bank is heading and promised to share the information with their respective members.

Agribank is a state-owned financial institution with the mandate to advance money to persons or financial intermediaries for the promotion of agriculture and activities related to agriculture.


View pdf

Agribank Steps Into The future

Following the adoption of its new 5-year Strategic Plan (2016/17 – 2020/21), the Agricultural Bank of Namibia (“Agribank”) is steaming full-speed ahead as it transform itself into a model world-class organisation.

Aligned to the Harambee Prosperity Plan, the Bank’s strategic plan has five focus areas namely, the Customer, Financial Sustainability, Employees, Governance as well as Socio-Economic Transformation which are supportive of its vision and strategy. Service Excellence, Innovation and Excellence in Execution will be the building blocks in executing the new strategy. The plan also outlines various key initiatives under each of the focus areas.

At a media briefing in Windhoek, Agribank’s Chief Executive Officer, Sakaria Nghikembua, highlighted some of the features of the strategy.

Key initiatives under the Customer focus area include understanding market insights through on-going research activities, offering relevant products and ensuring the Bank’s accessibility through increased footprint and digital platforms. Other innovative initiatives include the development of products for communal farmers in order to broaden financial inclusion and ensure food security at a household level. Nghikembua explained that loan book growth, interest income growth, cost containment, arrears management as well as non-interest income growth, will be amongst the core initiatives which are being implemented to ensure the Bank’s financial sustainability and thus enhance its ability to fulfil its developmental mandate in the long term.

It is against this background that the Bank is pursuing an intensified arrears collection strategy. The Bank has total arrears of just over N$500 million of the total loan book of N$2.4 billion, which represents an arrears-to-total advances ratio of 21%, whilst the benchmark ratio for development financing institutions is 15%. The sustained high levels of arrears would threaten Agribank’s financial sustainability and its ability to deliver on its mandate in the long-term. As part of the arrears collection strategy, the Bank has appointed debt collectors to assist it in collecting outstanding repayments from clients with effect from this month.

The new 5-year strategy further provides for the attraction and recruitment of staff with the required competencies, attitude and potential, while concerted efforts will be deployed to improve leadership and managerial capacity of employees through appropriate training and development interventions. The introduction of the recognition and reward scheme, performance-based incentives, performance management as well as creating a high performance culture are some of the initiatives under the Employee focus area. A performance management system has already been implemented with all employees of the Bank signing performance contracts for the second half of financial year ending 31 March 2017. New performance contracts are being developed for the new financial year starting in April 2017.

Due to the nature of its operations, the Bank is placing a lot of emphasis on risk management and compliance as part of its Governance focus area. Towards this end, Compliance and Risk specialists have already been recruited whilst the recruitment of a Governance Executive is underway. Upcoming initiatives include the company-wide roll-out of risk and compliance awareness sessions, the implementation of a compliance testing plan that has recently been developed, training of the Board and Senior Management on Governance-related matters and the roll-out of a risk management framework within the Bank. plans to embed risk management, enhance compliance and risk awareness under its Governance focus area. Ensuring business continuity management and enhancing audit and forensic capacity will also receive priority under the Governance focus area.

The Bank also plans to enhance its brand in the market, while extending lending to emerging farmers in communal areas, funding agro-industries and decentralising lending to the regions. Training and mentoring of emerging farmers to improve their production output, through an in-house division, as well as improving stakeholder engagement and granting bursaries in agriculture related fields, are some of the initiatives to support the socio-economic transformation focus area of the new strategic plan.

Nghikembua then highlighted some of the milestones achieved over the past six months as follows:

•Finalisation and implementation of the 5-year strategic plan
•Finalisation of intensified arrears collection strategy
•Implementation of a Bank-wide performance management system
•Inculcating a stakeholder engagement and communication culture within the Bank
•Revision of key policies such as the Delegation of Authority as well as aligning the Valuations policy to market practices. These policies have the effect of enhancing decision-making and positioning the Bank for competition in the market-place
•Taking and implementing a decision to establish a training and mentoring division for farmers within the Bank with effect from 1 April 2017
•Finalising the budget for the 2017/2018 financial year well ahead of time
•Finalising the annual financial statements and the annual report for financial year 2015/16 and holding the annual general meeting within six months of financial year-end as required by law.

This was a singular achievement in many years, which will now become the standard and embedding a culture of conducting robust reviews of the bank’s holistic performance across levels and metrics.

Nghikembua further stated that, despite the challenging operating environment, the Bank has maintained credible financial performance in the year so far. He expects the Bank to meet or exceed its key financial targets for the full year to the end of March 2017.

The Agribank chief explained that the Bank’s operating environment continue to be characterised by increased regulation and intensified competition, while the volatile weather cycles also pose their own challenges. According to him, this calls for considered strategic focus to achieve growth, maintain relevance and ensure sustainability. He said income-growth and cost-containment strategies are necessary in achieving the strategic objectives of the Bank.

Introducing a high-performance culture, embedding customer centricity, attaining financial inclusion, improving service efficiencies as well as leveraging technology and constant innovation, are some of the prerequisites to make Agribank a winning institution.

Nghikembua concluded by listing some of the key focus areas for the rest of this financial year as:

•Ensuring disciplined execution across the business
•Ensuring readiness to implement the training and mentorship division by 1 April 2017
•Delivering financial performance in respect of revenue, expenses, profit and collections
•Rolling out the no-collateral product for communal farmers by 31 March 2017
•Delivering on business process re-engineering by 31 March 2017 to improve service efficiencies
•Finalising performance contracts for the 2017/2018 financial year
•Ensuring readiness for the annual audit, delivering a no qualified audit and hosting the Annual General Meeting in September this year and,
•Sharing what Agribank does with the public to ensure we reach out to all potential customers in both communal and commercial areas

MEDIA RELEASE: Agribank steps into the future as new strategy swings into action

Issued by:
Sakaria Nghikembua
Chief Executive Officer

Picture Gallery

Quick Feedback

Security: In order to prevent automated programmes from sending spam, we request that you complete the following challenge:


What type of security must I provide for a loan at Agribank?

Loans are granted against security of fixed property, investment or any other acceptable form of security (fixed deposits, investments and surrendering value of policies). read more

Does Agribank also provide personal loans?

No, Agribank is not a commercial bank. read more

Does Agribank provide loans to first time farmers?

Yes, Agribank can assist you to start farming. read more

Our Surveys

Agribank Branch Locator