Local firm launches medical equipment
Local manufacturing company Sakaramenta on Wednesday officially launched its line of medical equipment at a ceremony held in Blantyre.
According to Managing Director of the company, Liyaka Nchilamwela, the equipment, which includes hospital beds, trolleys and basins has been made locally but using materials imported from outside the country.
Nchilamwela however said the current economic challenges have not spared local manufacturing companies.
He said taxes on imports are making it tough for local producers such as Sakaramenta to profitably operate in the country.
“As a company that relies on raw materials imported from outside the country, we are really finding it tough to sustain our small business as taxes on imports are higher than importing finished products,”said Nchilamwela.
He, therefore, asked government to consider reducing import tax in a bid to encourage more production here at home and in turn boost exports.
The launch of the hospital equipment comes at a time when most public hospitals in the country are facing challenges ranging from inadequate beds and trolleys.
And Minister of Health Peter Kumpalume, who pres ided over the launch, reiterated his ministry’s commitment to ensure that it contracts local companies such as Sakaramenta to supply such equipment to public hospitals.
“But the major factor we as government will always consider would be quality and good prices much as we want to promote the Best Buy Malawian initiative,” Kumpalume said.
On the issue of a possible reduction in import taxes, Kumpalume said hewill engage the Ministry of Trade to map the way forward.
Sakaramenta started producing hospital equipment in 2013.