Malawi’s economy is expected to embark on a more robust transformation following the completion of a multibillion Standardized Quality Assurance and Meteorology (SQAM) laboratory which is expected to be ready in two years time from now.
The vice president Dr Saulosi Chilima on Monday referred to the project as a milestone in the economic transformation that will edify the industrial and trade sectors of the nation.
The lab is situated in Blantyre behind the Trade Fair grounds.
“This laboratory will produce work that will be accepted on the international market as such it will facilitate the value addition process of our local agricultural and other products,” explained Chilima.
The vice president said the laboratory complex will save the country’s forex as the tests that were being done in South Africa for instance will now be carried out locally.
“We have talked at length about shifting from a predominantly importing and consuming nation to a producing and exporting one and that can easily be achieved when credible tests and certification are being done locally as it will be in case once the laboratory complex is done,” he added.
He indicated that the laboratory complex is part of the government’s key development projects which are being advanced as part of the public service reforms targeting improved service delivery.
Minister of Industry and trade, Joseph Mwanamveka extended the list of advantages that the complex will bring to Malawi by mentioning the area of consumer protection.
According to Mwanamveka, goods produced and packed in this country and abroad will undergo internationally accepted checks and tests before they are put to use thereby ensuring consumer rights full protection.
Mwanamveka also said the absence of such a high quality lab caused technical barrier to trade on the part of Malawi resulting in poor or no participation on the international market.
United Nations Development Programme(UNDP) is one of the financiers partnering with the Malawi Government in the project and the technical expertise is drawn from the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).
UNIDO’s representative, Francois Denner commended government for the commitment to ensure that the key milestone structure is realized.
Denner linked the development to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which tilt on poverty eradication, realizing social equality and mitigating environmental degradation.
“The Malawi business community and the populace are the core beneficiaries of this project as it will directly impact the economy hence improving people’s lives,” explained Denner.
The complex will be built on a €7.5 million donor fund on top of the K12 billion that the Malawi Government will invest.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :