Working Paper
Assessment of demand in agro-processing machinery in the SADC region

A case study of the maize-milling machinery value chain in South Africa and Zambia

This working paper is the fourth in a series that forms part of the project ‘Southern Africa – Towards Inclusive Economic Development’, a three-year partnership between UNU-WIDER and the South African government aimed at generating a better understanding of regional value chains and supporting industrialization in the Southern African Development Community region.

The SADC Industrialization Strategy and Roadmap 2015–2063 aims to arrest deindustrialization and resuscitate manufacturing capabilities within the region. Agro-processing, the largest contributor to manufacturing in most of the member states, has been chosen as one of the growth paths to help the region reindustrialize. Because of its backward linkages with the agricultural industry and forward linkages into the diverse food industry, this subsector has received immense government support and private sector investment. However, the region faces important leakages in imports of machinery.

This paper investigates whether the sector is stimulating additional manufacturing capabilities in agro-processing machinery, equipment, and parts, and whether these could drive capabilities, factor accumulation, and technological capability-building to capture the full value envisioned in the Roadmap.