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Malawi Enterprises Development Fund owed over K6bn in loan defaults

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Malawi Enterprises Development Fund (Medf), formerly Malawi Rural Development Fund (Mardef), says between K6 billion and K7 billion is stuck with loan defaulters who benefited from its various loan schemes.

Medf says politically influenced initiatives like the Farm Input Loan Programme (Filp) and Youth Enterprise Development Fund (Yedef) registered majority defaults.

But the institution, which has since rebranded has now started disbursing funds to farmers, agro-dealers and cooperatives with the aim of enhancing enterprise development in the country.

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On Wednesday, Medf launched a K100 million loan disbursement programme targeting cooperatives in the Eastern Region.

Ntcheu-based Nankungwi Cooperative, which produces irish potatoes, is one of the beneficiaries of the programme.

The cooperative, which supplies irish potatoes to Universal Industries, among others, managed to pay back its previous loans to qualify for the loan.

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According to Chief Operations Officer, Dingiswayo Jere, although Medf is struggling to recover in full the defaulted amount there is enough resources to finance agricultural related activities targeting both urban and rural individuals and groups.

“With the new strategic direction, we are ready to reach out to any business concepts in agriculture other than the previous focus of rural financing and we have been developing several (loan) products that we will be offering,” said Jere.

According to Jere, Medf will also introduce employer guaranteed loans.

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