The Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (MCCCI) has asked government to remove structural impediments to the growth of the manufacturing sector to promote inclusive economic growth.
MCCCI chief executive officer Chancellor Kaferapanjira said this last week in Lilongwe in response the International Monetary Fund (IMF) analysis that the just-ended Extended Credit Facility (ECF) fell short on stimulating growth and inclusion.
In its analysis, the global lender said despite the programme broadly achieving its macroeconomic stabilisation, it fell short on growth and inclusion.
For instance, social spending targets during the implementation period were not met six out of nine times the IMF reviewed the programme.
But Kaferapanjira said embracing citizens on inclusion means that everyone who has the capacity to work should be able to find employment, which calls for the need to foster growth of the manufacturing sector which includes restructuring how the industry operates.
He said: “The best way to create jobs is to create industries. If you leave out people from the economic process, you are creating social problems. Industry is the way forward that is why countries that have developed are called industrialised economies.
“When you have so many industries, you have competition and the wages become better. The advantage of industries is that they have multiplier effects. When you create one industry, you are created jobs in a number of factories that are connected to the value chain”.
In a previous interview, Catholic University dean of economics Gilbert Kachamba called for collaborative efforts between government and the private sector to promote growth of the manufacturing sector to address the rising unemployment rates.
“Government has to create a conducive environment for firms that are doing value addition and it can also ban the exportation of unprocessed commodities.
“The private sector must ensure that they are investing in the manufacturing sector and always collaborating with government so that things are made easier in addressing the bottle necks,” he said.
Malawi’s manufacturing sector remains in infancy.
According to the national accounts by the Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM), the sector’s contribution to the gross domestic product (GDP) has averaged 9.5 percent since 2011 and the sector is expected to grow by five percent this year.