Malawi’s biggest commercial bank by assets and profitability, National Bank of Malawi (NBM), on Thursday unveiled NBM Development Bank which seeks to offer long-term financing to businesses.
Unveiling the development bank in Lilongwe, NBM Chief Executive Officer, Macfussy Kawawa, who is also NBM Development Bank Chairperson, said the entity will help businesses achieve their long-term plans.
Kawawa said the bank seeks to assist the country’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and help them to grow into big corporations.
The bank is expected to offer loans for periods from between five to 10 years with a maximum of K150 million.
In addition to offering loans, NBM Development Bank will enter into partnerships with private sector players to ensure success in their businesses.
“This is the bank that many Malawians have been waiting for. Unlike commercial banks, this bank will focus on long-term borrowing,” Kawawa said.
Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) Governor, Dalitso Kabambe, said time had come for Malawi businesses to grow.
Kabambe said the coming in of NBM Development Bank will help actualise the dreams of many businesses who could not pursue long-term projects because of the nature of financing that was available on the market.
“People with business ideas such as coffee growing, opening a lodge in the tourism industry will now have no excuse for not pursuing those dreams.
“In addition, the bank gives a grace period before one starts repaying the loan, which is commendable,” Kabambe said.
Finance Minister, Josephy Mwanamvekha, said NBM Development Bank had come at the right time when the economy had stabilised.
“What government wants is to start growing the economy. The economy can grow if more businesses start borrowing money to expand their enterprises and create jobs,” Mwanamvekha said.