Encouraged with the outstanding progress of the government of President Mrs. Joyce Banda, the Federal Republic of Germany on Friday committed its self to fund Malawi’s health sector as one way of improving coverage of high quality services and reducing risk factors to health.
German Ambassador to Malawi, Dr Peter Woeste signed the Health Sector Strategic Plan (HSSP) Joint Financing Arrangement (JFA) on behalf of the Federal Republic of Germany in Malawi’s Capital City Lilongwe while Malawi Vice president Khumbo Kachali, who is also Minister of health, signed on behalf of the Malawi government.
Malawi’s Health sector nearly crumbled under the leadership of former President Bingu wa Mutharika as basic drugs became scare like gold nuggets and cases of drug pilferage became the order of the day.
The country’s economic malaise and poor governance made Malawi a pariah in the international community as bilateral and multilateral donors stopped injecting funds in the country.
Following the signing of the agreement, Germany will release a first tranche of four million Euros (MK1.4 billion).
According to a statement from the Germany Embassy in Lilongwe, the funds will also be used to improve equity and efficiency in the delivery of health services.
“Through newly introduced provisions and safeguards the agreement aims to ensure value for money in health service delivery so as to maximize the benefits for the people of Malawi,” the statement said.
Ambassador Woeste emphasized the fact that the substantial contribution is a continued demonstration of Germany’s commitment to helping Malawi and a signal of how the German government is impressed with the present government since coming office on April 7, 2012.
The Joint Financing Arrangement is the basis for development partners’ contributions to the Health Sector Pool Fund. Apart from Germany, the Flanders International Cooperation Agency (FICA), Norway, the United Kingdom, UNICEF, and UNFPA promote health service delivery in Malawi.