In 2017 KfW (a German state-owned development bank) received funding from BMZ (the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development which is a cabinet-level ministry of the Federal Republic of Germany) and began a co-operation with AATIF (the Africa Agriculture and Trade Investment Fund which is a closed-ended investment company initiated by KfW on behalf of BMZ to increase food security levels in Zambia. In 2018 KfW and AATIF incorporated a private company - Agricultural Leasing Company Zambia Limited (AgLeaseCo) in Lusaka, Zambia with the objective of bringing access to finance to small-scale and emerging farmers to enable them to spread the cost of mechanisation – a proven method of increasing the productivity of farm land across the world. In late 2018 AgLeaseCo received its Non-Banking Financial Institution (non-deposit taking) Licence from the Bank of Zambia and started to sign finance leases with credit-worthy (small-scale and emerging) farmers.