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Not an easy road—EU, UK

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Malawi’s leading development partners have reiterated the need for government to make good of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) loan facility and enhance the public sector reforms initiative in Public Finance Management if implementation of the 2018/2019 National Budget is to be achievable.

European Union (EU) ambassador to Malawi, Marchel Gerrmann told Malawi News that despite the Finance Minister hinting on the EU resuming direct budget support, it will only be a reality when government further strengthens public finance management and maintain macroeconomic stability.

“2012 was the last year that the EU provided budget support and since then we have moved on, we have provided large scale support to Malawi through programmes in agriculture, education, vocational training and energy, on budget support we have agreed with government to maintain economic stability and seal loopholes in public finance management,” Gerrmann said.

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British High Commissioner to Malawi, Holly Tett said that considering that 2019 is an election year the government needs to be more accountable and exercise financial prudence as shown in recent years.

“In an election year we know that there are sometimes pressures but it’s fantastic that Malawi has aligned itself with the IMF programme and I think they should stick to that and it will help the country maintain the macroeconomic stability and growth,” Tett said.

Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, Goodall Gondwe, said during budget presentation that the financial blueprint is likely going to get a boost from the EU and the World Bank . He said that the two institutions will make their interventions at any point during the financial year.

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Gondwe indicated during the 2017/2018 mid-term budget review that the World Bank will support the budget with K60 billion which is yet to be manifested.

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