PressCane Limited, a subsidiary of conglomerate Press Corporation Limited (PCL) plc, on Friday donated two ethanol-driven vehicles (EDV) ambulances that can run on both petrol and ethanol to Chikwawa and Nsanje district hospitals.
The donation comes barely two weeks after another PCL plc subsidiary, Ethanol Company Limited (EthCo), also donated two flexi-ambulances to Nkhotakota and Nkhata Bay district hospitals.
Both companies have been involved in the EDV project following a 2004 Malawi cabinet directive to explore increased use of ethanol as a standalone fuel for vehicles with the overall objective of contributing to the economic development of the country.
Speaking during the presentation of the flexi-ambulances on Friday, PressCane General Manager, Christopher Guta, said the donation is part of the company’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) programme which also involves provision of support to education and sports in addition to health sector.
“Today’s donation is very special because the ambulances are what we call flexi-vehicles which means that they can run on both ethanol or petrol or a combination of both.
“We urge you to take good care and look after these ambulances well so that they should serve patients by bringing them to hospitals to receive medical treatment,” Guta said.
He said the ethanol producing companies are waiting for government decision on the price of ethanol fuel before starting to sell it on the market as a standalone fuel.
“We are hoping that the price that they set will provide the incentives for us to make the investments necessary to increase availability of ethanol in Malawi, thereby support realisation of national goals regarding increased use of ethanol,” added Guta.
He asked government to support small scale farmers to increase sugar cane production as the two ethanol companies would be ready to buy sugar cane from the farmers subject to implementation of their raw materials (Rama) project which aims to increase availability of feedstock for the production of ethanol.