Where will Malawi get the K700 billion?
Malawi faces a tall order to raise over K700 billion meant for Tropical Cyclone Freddy reconstruction, Times has said.
President Lazarus Chakwera revealed on Monday that a Post Disaster Needs Assessment has revealed that Malawi will need more than K700 billion to recover from the devastating cyclone.
Chakwera was quick to note that the country does not have such a huge sum of money with the budget already passed.
“I will personally use a few upcoming international gatherings of world leaders to directly engage them with specific proposals on how they can support us with the daunting task we have going forward,” Chakwera said.
Already the K3.788 trillion budget approved on March 30 has a K1.32 trillion deficit which Finance Minister Sosten Gwengwe said would be financed through foreign borrowing amounting to K288.78 billion and domestic borrowing amounting to K1.19 trillion
In an interview yesterday, Gwengwe said authorities are banking on a number of avenues to raise the scarce resources.
“The Post Disaster Needs Assessment is out, yes. We are mobilising resources and the World Bank and others are committing their part.
“We have scaled up cash transfers in the budget plus the K54 Freddy fuel levy. Cash transfers cover livelihood aspects and they are part of the budget,” Gwengwe said.
According to Chakwera in the immediate term, Malawi faces a shortfall of K107.3 million.
“Despite the K1.6 billion that I ordered Treasury to release for emergency relief, and despite all the additional support we have received from Malawians, neighboring countries, and development partners for Operation Tigwirane Manja, we still have a shortfall of 107.3 million Kwacha to address the humanitarian needs that the affected populations are expected to face until the middle of June,” Chakwera said. Last week, World Bank Managing Director for Operations Anna Bjerde announced a $100 million assistance towards Cyclone Freddy response programmes.