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Kwacha seen gaining momentum

Betchani Tchereni

Ben Kalua

The Kwacha started gaining momentum against other trading currencies in March, recent figures from the Reserve bank of Malawi (RBM) have shown.

The central bank figures show that the local unit gained against the British Pound and the Euro but slightly depreciated against US Dollar and South African Rand.

During the month, the Kwacha was trading at an average of K790 from K787 in February against the dollar and at K1149 from K1140 in February this year against the Pound.

The local unit was trading at K993 from K1, 006 in February against the Euro and at K56 from K55 in the preceding month against the Rand.

The slight appreciations for some currencies come after a continued depreciation of the local currency since early last year.

The Polytechnic-based economics lecturer Betchani Tchereni attributed the Kwacha performance to loss in value of some of the currencies on the international market.

“The currency will start appreciating from this month as some harvesting has commenced in some parts of the country. And soon, we will open the markets for tobacco and other crops, hence the Kwacha will pick up,” Tchereni said.

In a separate interview, Economics Professor at Chancellor College Ben Kalua said the local unit would gain momentum as the country enters the harvest season.

He, however, said the country needs to rework its economic base to address consequences of seasonality.

“Our exports base is very narrow. I do not expect the situation to change much unless we lift our economy out of tobacco-dependence,” he said

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