Newly appointed Castel Malawi managing director (MD) Thomas Reynaud says he wants to grow the business by introducing new brands and building a modern brewery plant in Lilongwe to boost production.
He said this on Thursday in Lilongwe when the company introduced him to government officials and members of Parliament.
Reynaud has replaced Herve Milhade, who is heading to BGI, a Castel Group subsidiary in Ethiopia.
Reynaud said he is happy to serve the company in Malawi.
He said: “We are going through a lot of problems right now in terms of access to foreign exchange to enable us buy raw materials for our products.
“We are encouraging local sourcing of raw materials and agribusiness to grow and support the local economy so that we use local raw materials in these hard times.”
Reynaud commended the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs for reducing the alcohol excise tax regime, which was considered the highest in the 16-member Southern Africa Development Community (Sadc), leading to high production costs.
Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs reduced the alcohol excise tax for clear beer from 60 percent to 40 percent while for opaque beer, it was reduced from 30 percent to 10 percent.
In her remarks, Castel Malawi corporate affairs director Gloria Zimba also hailed partners and stakeholders who helped to lobby for the reduction of the excise tax regime.
“We want to commend the Malawi Government for this bold step which aligned Malawi to the Sadc region on the excise tax regimes for opaque and clear beer,” she said.
Zimba said the change has brought in many positive benefits to Castel Malawi such as maintaining affordable retail prices for local products, growth of production volumes, which has in turn tripled sales.
Speaking at the event, Budget and Finance Committee of Parliament chairperson Gladys Ganda pledged her committee’s support in lobbying the government on foreign exchange allocation for business sustenance, continuity and further growth.