Flashmag Digizine Edition Issue 110 October 2020 - Page 123

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Igovernment integrity, has had a strongly negative impact on the business and investment climates, and the government’s ongoing payment of wasteful producer and consumer subsidies has strained the budget.

The total value of exports and imports of goods and services equals 65.3 percent of GDP. The average applied tariff rate is 4.8 percent, and nontariff barriers further restrict trade flows. Both foreign and domestic investors are subject to government restrictions and heavy bureaucracy. The financial sector, dominated by banking, remains underdeveloped, and a full range of modern financing tools is not readily available.

Malawi’s three-year pathway of fast economic growth has been interrupted by the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. The full extent of the pandemic’s negative impact is still uncertain as the crisis unfolds but the widespread impact of the COVID-19 crisis is expected to be felt in the fourth quarter and beyond, with reductions in tax revenue paired with increased expenditure on health and economic policy responses.

Malawi’s economy grew by 4.4% in 2019, a marked increase from 3.5% in 2018 supported by a rebound in agriculture production, as maize and key crops apart from tobacco increased. Real gross domestic product (GDP) growth for 2020 was projected in September 2019 at 4.8% due to an expectation of the second consecutive year of strong harvests, offset by continuing political uncertainty weighing on business activity and investment.

Malawi has made progress in building its human capital—the knowledge, skills and health that people accumulate over their lives—in recent years. Life expectancy at birth is 63.7 years (2018 Population and Housing Census). The total fertility rate in 2015/16 was 4.4 children per woman down from 6.7 in 1992. Self-reported literacy (reading and writing in any language) is 71.6 for males and 65.9 for females (15+ years of age).

However, poverty and inequality remain stubbornly high. The latest poverty figures show the national poverty rate increased slightly from 50.7% in 2010 to 51.5% in 2016, but extreme national poverty decreased from 24.5% in 2010/11 to 20.1 in 2016/17. Poverty is driven by low productivity in the agriculture sector, limited opportunities in non-farm activities, volatile economic growth, rapid population growth, and limited coverage of safety net programs and targeting challenges.

Malawi’s development challenges are multi-pronged, including vulnerability to external shocks such as weather and health. The COVID-19 pandemic has further negatively impacted economic growth. Other challenges include rapid population growth and environmental degradation. Energy shortages still stand out, with about 11.4% of the population having access to electricity. Infrastructure development, the manufacturing base, and adoption of new technology are low, and corruption levels remain high with Transparency International ranking Malawi at 123/180 economies in 2019.

Tourism is a sector that surely if well exploited will put Malawi in the map of top destination in the Africa.

The lake Malawi, known as the calendar lake as it is 365 miles in length from north to south and 52 miles wide. It is regarded as the jewel in the nation’s tourism crown because of its cool, clear blue waters, paired with its golden sands. Interestingly, it is the third largest lake in Africa and many species of fish with endemic Chambo fish which is found in Lake Malawi only.

Mulanje Mountain nicknamed “The island in the sky” is the highest peak in southern Africa, with a height of 3000m, it’s at 65km from Blantyre the economic capital. The mountain is covered with several varieties of vegetation with a unique tree known as Mulanje Cider.

For nature lovers, the Majete Wildlife Reserve is 70 km from Chileka International Airport which serves Blantyre the second largest city after the capital Lilongwe, and Liwonde National Park, which is located in the southern part of Malawi, covers an area of 580 square kilometers with a distance of 160 km from Chileka International Airport. It is home to different species of animals, including: elephants, hippos, lions, leopards, crocodiles, black rhinos, hyenas and cheetahs.

Capital: Lilongwe

Area: 45,747 mi²

President: Lazarus Chakwera

Sources: world bank -

View of the Okavango Delta

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