To many people, the New Year comes with new resolutions and goals to improve their situation or plight. To achieve their goals, some invest in further education, others in property development as well as investing in children’s education. On the social scene, some make it their New Year resolution to minimise or altogether quit…

The PCL power switch

  End of year news reviews for 2016 would be incomplete without the mention of the change of guard at the helm of Press Corporation Limited (PCL), the country’s giant conglomerate with interests in diverse sectors. During the year under review, Matthews Chikaonda packed his briefcase from the gigantic office on the seventh floor of…

  When the clock ticks midnight on Saturday, December 31, the year 2016 will take a bow and the New Year 2017 will begin. That is the moment often marked by spontaneous celebrations, including fireworks and drum beating. This is the last entry for Business Unpacked in the year, so, I will dwell on reflections…

In a country where service delivery is generally poor and customer service is seldom up to scratch, it was refreshing to see the Chartered Institute of Customer Management (CICM) last Friday honouring some 87 service providers in appreciation of their service and to inspire others to do even better. Mediocrity has generally characterised service delivery…

For a long time, Malawi has had a negative trade balance in international trade. Malawi continues to have negative trade balance with China, the European Union (EU), Southern Africa Development Community (Sadc) dominated by South Africa, India and the United States of America (USA). Negative trade balance means hat as a country, Malawi is exporting…

  Pension is generally understood to be a retirement savings plan where one saves part of their income today to use on a rainy day, especially when one is in the “sun set” years of life. In an earlier article, I posed the question: “What do we know about pensions?” In that entry, I gave…

  In one recent article I discussed why some statutory corporations (SCs) or parastatals or indeed, in short, State enterprises continue to make losses year-in and year-out, in the process burdening the taxpayer to bail them out. I argued that it was ironic that the State enterprise makes losses in sectors where they do not…

  If findings of several recent audits of the operations of the public sector are anything to go by, fraud and corruption are rampant in Malawi. The vices tend to happen in various ways, including false claims and inflated invoices for goods and services rendered to the public sector. In 2013, following the shooting of…

  Rest is good. Sleep is equally good. Rest allows us to unwind and recharge after hectic schedules in the different endeavours we undertake in the course of earning a living to bring food on our tables, shelter over our heads and indeed clothing. This is one reason there are several holidays, including public holidays…

If you ask electricity users in Malawi when last they had uninterrupted supply of power from the national grid through Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom), a majority of them will likely tell you they do not recall. In fact, some of them will tell you that in rare cases where Escom supply goes uninterrupted…

  If I were to nominate a man of the week, Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development Goodall Gondwe would fit the bill for telling it like it is in as far as the economic situation is concerned. Times are hard. Malawians are barely surviving. The national economy is on a stand-by generator, beyond…

  If you ask electricity users in Malawi when they last had uninterrupted supply of power from the national grid through Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom), the majority of them will likely tell you they do not recall. Euphemistically, some of them will tell you that in rare cases where Escom supply goes uninterrupted…

  To many customers of most of the commercial banks in the country, undertaking banking transactions, especially at the end of the month, is one nightmare they would want to avoid given a choice. Banking during this period is characterised by congested banking halls as well as meandering queues on automated teller machines (ATMs) service…

  If findings of several recent audits of the operations of the public sector are anything to go by, fraud and corruption are rampant in Malawi. The vices tend to happen in various ways, including false claims and inflated invoices for goods and services rendered to the public sector. In 2013, following the shooting of…

PIL explains fuel tender

  Petroleum Importers Limited (PIL), a consortium of private oil marketing companies, has denied accusations of foul play and lack of transparency in the recent award of fuel supply contracts in the country. Reacting to a story in The Nation edition of August 19 2016 where two of the bidders—Independent Petroleum Group (IPG) of Kuwait…

MEC chair Mbendera’s death shocks colleagues

  The Judiciary and the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) were on Thursday shocked by the sudden death of Supreme Court Justice Maxon Mbendera, the commission’s chairperson. Mbendera died suddenly on Thursday after taking ill while attending a meeting at the National Audit Office (NAO) in Lilongwe. Both Judiciary spokesperson Mlenga Mvula and MEC director of…

  For three years now, the Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) and its partners have been hosting the National Financial Literacy Week (NFLW) to raise awareness on the available wide range of financial products. In 2015, the week was held in Mzuzu under the theme Budgeting and Saving: Foundation to Financial Freedom. Prior to that,…