A local entrepreneur has urged the government to fasttrack the establishment of the country’s Development Bank, to address youth unemployment.
SS Rent- A -Car Managing Director Helen Singh said high bank lending rates, currently at over 40 percent, are one of the main obstructions to the growth of young entrepreneurs.
The government two years ago planned to establish a Development Bank but the dream is yet to be realised.
Singh made the appeal on Saturday at Chancellor College during a youth social entrepreneurship fair organised by Centre for Free Market (CFME) and Young African Leaders Initiative (Yali) organisations under the theme, ‘Harnessing entrepreneurial potential among Malawian youth’.
“Access to finance is key to business development. Investment and innovation are not possible without adequate financing. But the biggest challenge in Malawi for business is the banking rates now at 44 or 43 percent. The lowest I have seen on the market is about 38 percent, but that is still too high.
“Malawi needs to establish a development bank. There was talk about it but it fail through. This [bank] could have gone a long way in establishing young people in business with less than 10 percent interest rate,” she said.
Singh further said all the developing economies have in place a development bank.
CFME Executive Director, Peter Yakobe said they decided to organise a youth social entrepreneurship fair to inspire and motivate students from chancellor college, Zomba Catholic, Mlunguzi and Chinamwali secondary schools to consider doing businesses and create employment among themselves after their education.