Escom unbundling to end June 2016

New company to distribute, transmit power   Government says the splitting of the sole power utility company, the Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) into two parastatals is expected to be complete by June next year. The unbundling of Escom, which has over the years been enjoying the monopoly of power, is currently being undertaken…

Government allays job loss fears at Escom

Malawi Government has allayed fears that the restructuring process of the power sector that will, among others, see the sole power utility Electricity Corporation of Malawi (Escom) being split into two or more parastatals will lead to job losses. Currently, government is implementing a Power Market Restructuring (PMR) which seeks to unbundle or split Escom…

Standard Bank warns of perpetual kwacha fall

Standard Bank Africa has warned that the local currency, the kwacha, may continuously depreciate against its major trading currencies if Malawi dilly-dallies to grow its exports which are way below the value of imports. Goolam Ballim, Standard Bank Group chief economist and head of research, sounded the warning in Lilongwe yesterday during a Malawi Economic…

Kayelekera valuable asset—paladin

Paladin Energy Limited says Keyelekera Uranium Mine (KUM) in Karonga   remains a valuable asset despite its continued suspension over plummeting uranium price on the global market. The stance by the dual-listed multinational firm follows a feasibility study for the recommencement of the production at Keyelekera which, according to Paladin, is nearing completion. “The study to…

Malawi hosts tobacco meet

  Malawi is today hosting   Tobacco Coalition for Eastern and Southern Africa also known as T5 Meeting at the Bingu International Convention Center (Bicc) in Lilongwe. The objective of the meeting seeks to come up with country positions on tobacco as an important and strategic commodity for the participating countries and livelihoods of their poor…

RBM deputy boss dares economists

Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) Deputy Governor (economics) Naomi Ngwira on Friday challenged economists in the country to enhance collaboration in the area of research if Malawi is to realise meaningful economic development. Ngwira, speaking at Chancellor College in Zomba during the launch of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between RBM and the Department of…

RBM, CHANCO TO SIGN MoU

Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) and Chancellor College’s Department of Economics (DOE) are today expected to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that is expected to enhance coordination between the two parties on a number of aspects. The MoU sets out the understanding in delivering the collaborative arrangement in the areas visiting lectureship by RBM…

   Govt summons buyers over low tobacco prices

Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development Allan Chiyembekeza on Thursday and Friday last week held talks with tobacco buying companies over low prices following a general outcry from growers, Business Review has learnt. On the agenda, according to sources at Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development, was also the suspension of sales of…

Inflation rate to remain high, firm warns

There is no end in sight to rising commodity prices as Blantyre-based investment advisory firm, Nico Asset Managers Limited, has forecast that the inflation rate will remain high, triggered by soaring high cost of food and low maize output. In its June 2015 monthly economic report, Nico Asset Managers said: “Inflation is expected to remain…

GOVT BANKS HOPE ON PLANNING COMMISSION

Secretary to the Treasury Ronald Mangani has said the National Planning Commission (NPC), which government is currently establishing will help to formulate and review policies and strategic plans for national development and also recommend allocation of resources. Once created, NPC will be an independent body for strategic thinking on matters of national development, established by…

Paladin disputes report on shady tax dealings

  Dual-listed mining company Paladin Energy Limited has disputed recent findings of a report by international civil society group, ActionAid, which accused the firm of ripping off Malawi through “harmful” tax incentives and tax dealings. The ActionAid report dated June 2014 titled An Extractive Affair: How One Australian Mining Company’s Tax Dealings Are Costing the…

Govt launches water licensing campaign

  Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development Allan Chiyembekeza on Friday launched the water licensing reform campaign in Lilongwe which seeks to create public awareness regarding water resources management and administration in Malawi. The launch follows a year-long consultancy work by DHI Consultants and Troppenwasser Consulting Professionals (TCP) which carried out a comprehensive and…

New Finance Bank touts its lending rates

New Finance Bank (NFB), a new entrant in the country’s banking sector, says it is currently offering competitive prices for its products, citing low lending rates and higher deposit rates on customer savings. The bank’s deputy chief executive officer Gilford Kadzakumanja told Business News in Lilongwe last week that NFB, which opened its first branch…

Trade Minister laments high interest rates

  Minister of Industry and Trade Joseph Mwanamvekha on Wednesday complained that interest rates being charged by commercial banks and other lending institutions are currently too high. Commercial banks’ base lending rates are ranging between 37 percent and 39.5 percent despite Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) policy rate or bank lending rate settling at 25…

MCCCI ACCUSES GOVT OF POLICY INCONSISTENCIES

Private sector lobby group Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (MCCCI) has decried policy inconsistencies, accusing government of implementing conflicting policies that are holding back the country’s economic growth and development. MCCCI chief executive officer (CEO) Chancellor Kaferapanjira said the inconsistencies are sending wrong signals to private sector players who are struggling to…

Govt targets domestic resources to fund 90% of budget in 10 years

Malawi plans to reduce to 10 percent its current dependence on donor money, announcing on Wednesday that it wants domestic resources to finance 90 percent of the national budget in a decade’s time.   Capital Hill has since outlined measures that will help the country to maximise domestic revenue collection for implementation of subsequent budgets…