APM challenges Malawi economists to come up with ‘workable solutions’

President Peter Mutharika has challenged economists in the country to come up with workable solutions to deal with economic problems of the country than preaching doom.

President Mutharika, First Lady and Vice President Saulos Chilima at Ecama conference

President Mutharika, First Lady and Vice President Saulos Chilima at Ecama conference

Mutharika speaking at Ecama conference

Mutharika speaking at Ecama conference

Mutharika said this Thursday in Mangochi when he opened Economists Association of Malawi (Ecama) annual general meeting.

“Bring forward solutions that would inspire the nation than preaching doom,” said Mutharika to the professional delegates.

He said economists should strive to portray the economic situation in a way that inspires not in a way that leaves Malawians hopeless.

Mutharika said his government is set to take the right actions.

“We have no choice but to keep pushing forward peddles of the economy. And we are aggressively pursuing the Public Sector Reforms, including those on Public Finance Management. It is time to make the people trust their government. Give me the right advice, and I will give you the right decisions. Give us the best advice, and we will take the best of the actions. In that collective spirit, Malawi cannot fail,” said Mutharika.

“The economic reality is not as bad as some people want us believe,” said Mutharika.

In parliament though, Mutharika painted a gloomy future for Malawi, saying it will take time for the economy to bounce back to its old glory.

He said the present economic situation is a culmination of long history and some major external shocks that include floods and drought which are unavoidable.

The Malawi leader said the plunder of public resources in the infamous cashgate worsened the situation.

He said the loss of 40 percent of budgetary support from donors that would have been pumped into the economy knocked down the already fragile situation putting Malawi on a sick bed.

However, Mutharika said the situation would improve soon.

And speaking in Blantyre recently Mutharika claimed the economy would pick up in December or January next year a prediction that has been highly disputed by some economists.

In his address to the economists, Mutharika said the fundamentals of the economy are “ stronger today than they were 12 months ago.”

He said: “ Certainly, headline inflation is high granted the 24.1 percent as at September 2015; yes, 1.1 percent higher than the previous month. But, this is only 0.4percent higher than the same period last year. If you look at the numbers closely, on a year-on-year basis, it is the food inflation which is hitting us so hard now.”

Mutharika appealed to  ECAMA to continue playing a positive advisory role on economic issues for Malawians to benefit from association’s services.

ECAMA is a forum of economists in Malawi and other interested parties that analyse economic-related issues and provide evidence-based policy advice that aims at improving economic management.

It was formally launched in 1999 as a voluntary membership organisation comprising a pool of professional economists from across the country and abroad.

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30 thoughts on “APM challenges Malawi economists to come up with ‘workable solutions’”

  1. DPP says:

    Mr president, ndalama za cash gate mutibwezele kaye, zinthu ziyamba kuyenda, paja mukusunga ndi inutu

  2. jimbo says:

    Being a Law Professor does not qualify APM to govern the country. What does he know of politics and economics? Every time he opens his mouth in public he reveals how unsuited he is to govern. He only speaks in generalities and never in specifics. What precisely is he doing that will improve the economy in December and January? What exactly is being done to prepare the country for the effects of el Nino? How can anyone have faith and trust in him and his government when they have no idea what practical policies are being pursued? APM’s leadership is non-existent. The government is a ship without a rudder going round in circles. It is four more years to 2019, a long time for the people to have to wait to rid the country of the bogus DPP and its aged leader.

  3. Kalonga says:

    Solutions??? Hahahahahaha koma!!!!!! Pachithu pakakhala vuto pali vuto and vuto silimagona olo uthawe limakupezabe

  4. Jose says:

    Mr President can you assure us Malawians that you are now ready to take advices from other quarters! Advices have been given you in the past but have all fallen on deaf ears. If I may remind you for example; did you not get advised not to sale MSB? What did you do in response, you sold it. The problem with you is that you believe you are wiser than the next person. No you are not there are other things that others know better than you do. So learn to take advice my dear president. You can make a good president no mistake about it.

  5. Ineyo says:

    Mr President, you do not need economists to advise you. They will tell you the very same principles you already know but are reluctant to implement: accountability, cut down operational costs such as motorcades of fuel guzlers, obscene fuel allowances for your ministers, government/parastatal CEOs, reduce apetite for expensive cars for yourself and the aforementioned above.Why use an expensive 4 X 4 (V8) from Area 10 to Capital Hill when a simpleToyota Corolla/Camry would do excatly the same job at a quarter of the cost? Avoid un necessary Presidential trips both internal and external as such trips involves many people and therefore costs tax payers alot. Put right people in positions to ensure performance and accountability, avoid nepotism. Ensure that in all government instititutions there are proper systems of checks and balance and ensure that they systems are working to avoid abuse of public funds/property. Above all be patriotic, love your country and put it ahead before your personal gains. Ensure that everone of your servants do the same. The economists can then come up with nitty grities after you have put in place these basics. Good luck Mr President.

  6. malawi wane says:

    A real president was supposed to call the wise men of the land to a meeting. They should discuss how best they can tackle the problems the country is facing. Anything agreed on the meeting, the government should do. The woman Joice Banda did that it worked. Malawi is for all not dpp only.

  7. The Only Democrat Left says:

    Mr President Sir, any economist or politician will tell you that the prerequisite to offering your government solution to the immense economic problems that we Malawians face under your leadership, is in the following:

    1) Stop all government procurement of drugs for hospitals, fertilizer and other government requirements from Indian traders In Malawi, instead procure these items from bona fide manufacturers who certify that they are not paying commissions to Indian traders in Malawi or any government minister or to you Mr President himself. This will stop corruption in your government.

    2) Explain to us Malawians why you have failed to repay Malawi the billions that you and your brother Bingu stole from Malawi.

    If it is that you and Bingu did not steal the billions then explain To Malawians how Bingu who was a owner / conductor of a mini bus ended up with the billions in bank accounts and the money to built a palace at his farm.

    However if you and Bingu did as alleged steal billions then return the money to Malawi.
    3)Then let the donors and external auditors certify that there is no corruption in your government.

    As simple as this.

    Finally explain why you lied to Malawians during your campaign for Presidency that you and DPP had the solutions to our economic problems.

  8. Yoswa kangazi says:

    Understanding sayings is for wise people what the President is saying and had been saying need wisdom to understand. Here he is asking economist and even ordinal malawians not only to say the negative part but to give solutions so as to improve the situation of the country. “Bring forward solution that can inspire the nation that preaching doom”, he said. Then what we need to do is not only to come with negatives without saying how can we improve to the positive side. So dear Malawians please can you bring positive solutions, remember facts are greater than many negative without facts.

  9. Blessed Banda says:

    I thought its the same man who said the economic situation is bad in Malawi and no one should say ng’weng’we because Malawi is broke? This old man is too forgetful of what he says. Only fools can follow him.

  10. wika says:

    so you mean that you have failed to run the country , now you want the economists to take over.

  11. chimwemwe says:

    Sir, it you who is in power and you can take decisions that can stall the economic plunge Malawi is suffering. each country is different IMF rules apply evenly to the whole world. What Malawi needs is to fix and peg its currency like kamuzu and bingu did in 2004-09, it worked for malawi as it was doing well, when we follow imf principals of floating currency get ready for economic disaster. IMF should understand malawi is landlocked and does not have minerals we cannot have floating currency, it is just bringing more poverty and misery and making us poorer then ever before.

  12. Mulhomwe Wankulu says:

    Iwe Peter Ibu Muthalika, who are you fooling? U are saying the economic reality is not as bad as some pple want us to believe, are you sure?? Usataniki kapena ufiti??Are you out of your senses or what? Nyapapi wachabechabe iwe n’theradi!!!Anthu m’mene tikuvutikilamu nde uziti nfwenfwenfweeeeeee, zoona? Iwetu unakakhala pafupi nane ndikanaku senda ndi mwala wanva galu iwe??? Anthu akukhalira kudya mango ophika m’makomomu nde lero uziti economy ili bwino? very stupid indeed!!!Poti iweyo,nkazi wakoyo, zinduna zakozo ndi azibale ako mukukhuta ndi kugeya basi unvekele everything is rosy?Pumbwa wachabe chabe iwe. Pankholo pako wamva?????

  13. Guguh says:

    Pictorial comment:
    The first lady needs to up her etiquette game. National anthem you touch your heart not stomach. Seems like daddy wonso doesn’t know where to put his hand. What are we teaching kids with this? Can they take the national anthem seriously with what i see here?

    I remember Kamuzu days the attention stance was taken seriously even pa assembly ku school. Izi nde kaya izi!!!

  14. Hamu says:

    Iwe Peter umuuze Chilima zimenezo wamva. Pamene mumagwirizana zobela mavoti simumaziwa kuti zimafuna luntha izi? simunati.!!!!!

  15. Guguh says:

    Well being consultative is a good suggestion but would you listen to any of what the others bring to the table? What big adjustment have you as a president made to show that you are serious about changing the situation in the country? You could have frozen some of these pay increases,unnecessary vehicle purchases. If we were to study other countries that are doing well and adapt their best practices plus INTEGRITY AND ACCOUNTABILITY i don’t think we’d be in this pickle as a nation. Mix that with low cost sensitization across the country against vandalism, ppl to understand that it’s for the nation not any political party, for people to think of their children’s future and not just here and now,…change of mindset…seriously there would be so much change..but alas!!!

    Amayi ankaoneka ngati openga when she invited other parties to discuss and you didn’t attend if my memory serves me well. Amayi aja ankapakula koma she turned a lot of things around in the same period that you have got nothing to show for though we might try to ignore this fact.

  16. Nyapapi says:

    Mr President, I thought you included these solutions in your DPP manifesto? Are you telling us that your manifesto was a cosmetic or was just to be used to go into government and now its useless. My quick solutions to fix the economy are that recover MK577 billion which is unaccounted for since 2009, Stop nepotistic way of running the country. Probe the deaths of Chasowa and Njaunju. However, I feel you are someone who can’t listen because you bulldozed the sale of Malawi Savings Bank and again you don’t seem to know what Malawians want.

  17. mzungumbuli says:

    Thats being rude and arrogant, you cant “challenge them” but you would rather invite them for a brainstorming session to find the way forward. But even if do that we cant assist you because you are pig-headed and stuborn unless you throw in the towel to resign the seasoned economists will come in to give their input. To hell with your invitaion and rot in the bush.

  18. Mbiri says:

    Malawian economists are the major culprits in the pathetic developmental state of this country and I don’t think they have a clue on how to move this country in the right direction. What they know is to come up with bulky theoretical documents/frameworks that even they do not understand and cannot implement. Look at the MGDS…….how many ‘Thematic Areas’ does it have?! What is so difficult in crafting a simple, short and sweet development plan that even the dzimwales can comprehend? That is why 50 years down the line, the UNIMA graduates are still not productive while in Malawi. The same people are doing wonders in other countries. This is 2015 BUT Why do we not see Poly graduates manufacturing radios, or why don’t we see Chanco graduates inventing drugs from our mitengo or better still why are Bunda/LUANAR graduates not coming up with a faster maturing Zebu breed? Awa koma kugula ma Prado which they fail to maintain when they retire. Look at the Mercedes Benz that the governor of the Reserve Bank of Malawi rides in and you would think he is the exchequer of some real country. By the way, what is it that you can only discuss in Mangochi? Is it just my imagination that allowances are involved. Austerity measures Malawi style. Our neighbours who have some exports are really cutting down on expenses including holding national prayers, but we, who are still dependent on a dying product, don’t seem to care. The president actually has the guts to say ‘The economic reality is not as bad’. Maybe its time to look for another place to call home.

  19. wa ku Mitchesi kujaaaaa!!!! says:

    So far the economists in Malawi have failed us.

    Is it that they do cannot model the Malawi economy?
    Or maybe they just can’t think outside the box?
    Or their education, PhD etc, is inadequate or not sophisticated enough?
    Or they are tangled up in political quagmire?
    Or they just avoid difficult work? They are simply lazy?
    Or they are just economists, but on paper only?
    Why can’t they even guidance from their former profs, or PhD supervisors at the institutions where they were trained?

    This is puzzling: Chanco has been churning out “economists” for many years. And it’s not like, in medicine or pharmaceutical sciences, where very sophisticated and expensive equipment is required for research.
    Now, if APM goes out and hires hard working and results oriented foreigners to do the job, the same local economists failures will accuse him of favoritism, and worse, of ignorance. APM: just ignore them alright. Go out and hire capable people baasi.

  20. Mandla says:

    Our economists have textbook ideas. They believe in economic theories that were propounded by Adam Smith some 300 years ago and brainwashed by IMF / World Bank policies.

    They do not know how to adopt theoretical ideas to suit local conditions. Just look at what the Reserve Bank Governor Charles Chuka did. He increased the interest rate when the interest rate is already high. You think that was a wise decision?
    These economists advise government wrongly. For example, they advised government to sell MSB instead of telling government to keep it and run it efficiently.

  21. Patriot says:

    Isamakomele mbuzi kugunda galu.
    When are you going to be Patriotic Mister President?
    Do you know that each and everytime you trot on our roads, you cost us malawians K70 million?
    Last week you went to Chonde for the mulakho festival (K70 million),
    You went to Zomba (another K70 million)
    Yesterday you went to open ecama meetings (another K70 million)



  22. Nankununkha sadzimva says:

    It’s political will that Malawi is deficient of. No matter how technocrats come up with sound policies but without political acumen everything is non starter. It goes back to overall decisions made by you Mr President. For instance, would you take it if the economists recommend that you should from now onwards have a four vehicle convoy to cut unnecessary costs?

  23. Mccarthy says:

    Mr. President you want MCP to bring the solution? So who’s ruling this Country? I thought you been saying that you’re a millionaire? Opposition party can solve the problem only if you can resign now, How can Chakwera come up with solution, but you the one who’s ruling the country? I think mr. President you need a doctor.

  24. Sapitwa says:

    All your predecessors could not have run this country without 40% donor aid, granted! We all thought Donors would come back soon after you became President but shows running the country without 40% budget donor aid is the way now.There is no one who can challenge that if they were in power today then Donors will resume Aid. If he is a Malawian and can convince the Donors, let him do so now and hear what they can tell him. You don’t need to be President to do this. I bet there is no one even the reverend with his advisors from the US, he can’t try this. I think given this reason, we as a nation, we are slowly getting used though they say mabvuto sadzolowereka.
    This is where we need to come together as a Nation because we are sailing on strange waters where not even the Navigator has experience. APM, you can also seek foreign Economists to advise you as some of these local ones have allegiance to individual political parties and they will come up with nothing but criticism.

  25. KARU UNITED says:

    Mr President you get massive benefits from the state including that liberty of hiring executive jets it is your job to come up with economic solutions. You are on the chair with all the trappings that go with the post & you mean the economists should tailor solutions for the country for free?

  26. Presidential Advisor says:

    …he is just exposing himself that he is not a consultative person. If he was, he would not challenge them but rather tell the nation the economic plan discussed. Seriously, ine ndatopa nayo ntchitoyi. Nzeru za yekha anamanga slab ku shire

  27. WAKUDA KAMANGA says:

    Inu DPP sichipani choti mkuchivela ichi anthu osava zazawo.

  28. kabotolokamo says:

    Who should come up with a solution ? , l thought DPP said they would turn things around , now they admit its not working too late ! IOI!

  29. mtumbuka1 says:

    You rigged the votes and promised people that you will fix the economy even your minister of finance mr Goodall gondwe promised the country that people will be clapping hands for dpp government bla bla, what happened now? Stop challenging economists just tell the country that you have failed and you need someone to pull your head out of the sand. The problem is that you are surrounded by stupid people … What value can ben phiri add to the country apart from terrorizing political opponents?

  30. peter muthanyula says:

    I am surprised that people still have faith in Malawi-trained economists. Having failed to manage the economy for 50 years, we still have faith in those pretentious guys? Let’s get serious guys! Ndilozereni economist mmodzi (only one) olongosoka ku Malawi kuno. Just one!

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