Malawi on verge of K296bn EU deal
Malawi is in the final stages of securing a major aid infusion of over K296 billion (€560 million) from the European Development Fund (EDF), a senior official has said.
Finance, Economic Planning and Development Minister Goodall Gondwe disclosed this on Friday at a farewell reception for the out-going EU Ambassador and Head of Delegation to Malawi Alexander Baum at the envoy’s residence in Lilongwe.
The envoy, who will depart Malawi in early July after serving for four and a half years in the country, heads to Botswana , where he will be the EU Ambassador who will also be accredited to the Southern Africa Development Community (Sadc).
Gondwe said Malawi will greatly miss Baum as he was instrumental in opening the EU aid tap.
“Ambassador Baum has been a good friend of Malawians. He has done a tremendous amount of work for us,” said Gondwe, adding that total EU aid, to-date, stand at K528.7 billion (€1billion).
He described the on-going negotiations for more EU aid as timely in view of the financial crisis that has brought Malawi virtually to its knees.
On his part, Baum said during the current leadership transition, Malawi stands to befit from an intensive interaction with the international community, while confidently paving the way towards a better future.
He said the recent contentious tripartite elections had also “left scars on many people’s souls” which need to be healed quickly, partly by eliminating electoral errors next time.
“So, the government of President [Peter] Mutharika must now be given a chance to deliver on its promises, to lead constructively and to lead by example. I wish Malawi and Malawians the luck and determination it takes to be successful,” Baum said.