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Ministry of Agriculture: National Directorate of Agricultural Extension
Extension Master Plan
2007 - 2016
31 March 2009


Background

General

The long term goals of the agricultural sector in Mozambique are to improve food security and reduce poverty by supporting the efforts of smallholders, the private sector and governmental and non-governmental agencies to increase agricultural productivity, agro-processing and marketing, while keeping a sustainable path for the exploitation of natural resources. PROAGRI I, the first national investment program for the agricultural sector (1998 - 2004) has been instrumental for the fulfilment of these long term goals.

Extension Services was one of the eight components of PROAGRI and the first Extension Master Plan (EMP, 1999-2004) was formulated in line with the basic principles for extension in PROAGRI I: enhanced research-extension linkages, downward accountability to farmers on services delivered, multiple extension service delivery systems, social inclusion (in particular women, youth and PLWHA) and quality staff at different levels.

The EMP called for a twofold approach: the adoption of Unified Extension Services, SUE, encompassing crop production, livestock and natural resource management, and the development of an integrated National Agricultural Extension System, SISNE, with functional partnerships between public and private extension services, including the development of public contracts with non-government service providers. Moreover, the plan also calls for increased linkages with other institutions such as research, agricultural services and marketing institutions; and mentioned the possibility for cost recovery from farmers served by public extension services.

Following an extensive consultation and backed up by the formulation of the Vision for the Agricultural Sector, the second phase of PROAGRI was planned to begin in January 2005, with an inception year for addressing outstanding operational and procedural issues and a full-fledged start in 2006. Consistently with the aims of PROAGRI II, the EMP was also reviewed and a new EMP (2006-10) was drafted focusing more on: the implementation of different extension approaches in support of the deconcentration process; improved efficiency and increased multi-service provider coverage of the extension services.

Meanwhile, the Extension Services component of PROAGRI II was formulated, but for a period 8 years. The National Extension Programme, supported through PROAGRI's common fund is due to start in early 2007. This new final version of the EMP (2007-2016) is in line with the formulated National Agricultural Extension Programme, PRONEA, both in terms of vision, strategic objectives and timeframe and as such complementary to the basic documentation for the Extension Services component under PROAGRI II, which was developed with support from IFAD (ASP, 2005).

The Extension Master Plan provides the strategy of the Ministry of Agriculture for agricultural extension for the period 2007-2016. The agricultural extension strategy is based on the strategy for PROAGRI II 2006-2010, the draft Extension Master Plan and the National Agricultural Extension Programme 2007-2014, PRONEA, which is based on the Agricultural Support Programme documentation (ASP, 2005)

All referred documents have gone through extensive consultation process with stakeholders at district, provincial and central level, as well in the public and private sector. Farmers and their organizations have in particular been consulted on their demands for knowledge-based services in the coming years. The base documents for the current extension master plan have been further based on the positive and negative lessons learnt during the implementation of the Extension Master Plan 1999-2005 and indeed the lessons learnt during the implementation of PROAGRI I, such as the generally recognized need for a paradigm shift on agricultural extension in the country due to recent developments such as decentralization, participatory planning monitoring an evaluation and the wide-spread introduction of multi-stakeholder approaches in agricultural innovation systems and value chain developments.

On the basis of lessons learnt from PROAGRI II an in view of on-going processes such as decentralization, globalization of trade and the progress made in relation to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals the presented Extension Master Plan will be updated after five years, which is towards the end of 2011.

Some basic data

Mozambique is a vast country with an area of about 799 380 km2 sq. km and around 2 400 km of coastline along the Indian Ocean. Mozambique shares about 4 330 km of land borders with Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Swaziland and South Africa. The country is divided into 10 provinces and 128 districts. The total area of arable land is estimated at around 36 million hectares, of which only about 9 million hectares are currently under cultivation (PROAGRI II, 2004, p. 27). It is estimated that about 3.3 million hectares of land can be irrigated, but at present only about 50 000 hectares of land (0.13%) are under irrigation.

The population of Mozambique of 19 million is growing about 2.6% per year and it is predominantly rural (70% in the recent census). Agriculture is dominated by 3.2 million small scale farms (family sector) with an average size of 1.1 ha of farm land (PROAGRI, 2004, ASP, 2005). Agriculture plays an important role in rural employment generation as well as contributing to household and national food security and reducing the mainly rural poverty, and is central to the economy accounting for 20% of GDP and 80% of exports, while 80% of the workforce is in the agriculture sector, 90% of the women and 70% of the men, and poverty is greater in rural areas (55%) than in urban areas (52%). Rural poverty is primarily attributable to limited agricultural development, limited market development and poor productivity levels. Mozambique had a gross national income (GNI) per capita of USD 260 per year in 2004, according to the PARPA joint review, that is amongst the ten lowest in the world. The agricultural sector GDP is growing at 5-7% annually, but at a lesser rate than the overall economy, as the share of the agricultural GDP is gradually decreasing from 37% (1997) to 24% (2000) and to 20% in 2002, while the contribution from industry is rapidly increasing in the same period (from 22% to 31%) (IMF, 2003). Agricultural development is however fundamental for poverty reduction as rural families generate about 80% of their income from the agricultural sector, while the other 20% has a strong link with the local economy (TIA 2002, CAP, 2000).

Most crop yields in Mozambique are low (Table 1). The use of modern inputs and mechanization is almost nonexistent (less than 2% use fertilizers or pesticides, 5% use animal traction and less than 10% use some form of agricultural equipment) (PROAGRI I, 2004; p21, ASP, 2005).

Table 1 Mozambique: Yield of Major Crop (t/ha)

Crop Yield in t/ha
Maize 0.9
Cassava 5.5
Sorghum 0.6
Pulses 0.45
Groundnuts 0.5
Rice 1.1
Coconuts 4.2
Source: SG2000 Second Phase Project Document (2003), ASP, 2005

The common denominator of the family sector (small scale) is low productivity, limited ability of households to generate savings and food insecurity. These characteristics dominate small-scale agriculture which is geographically dispersed as well as culturally, technically and economically heterogeneous. Thus, given this overall situation, the challenge is to one of figuring out how to mobilize the latent productive capacity of 3.2 million family farms and medium and large scale farms and transform agriculture in Mozambique from a largely subsistence production system to a more market oriented production system while improving national and household food security.

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