Germany to assist Malawi, distances itself from aid withdrawal reports

Germany Government has dismissed media claims that it will not release budget support to Malawi until 2015 describing the news as “absolutely wrong” adding that the European country is pumping more money into the country now than ever before.

Similarly, Minister of Information Moses Kunkuyu said in a press briefing in Lilongwe on Friday that government had not received any communication on the development partners’ suspension of aid to Malawi until 2012 as put in the media.

Germany ambassador to Malawi Dr. Peter Woeste was quoted on Friday in an exclusive interview with Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) as saying the future of aid to Malawi from the donor community appeared bleak in March 2012 and that the donors were not certain on how the country could regain its economic stance.

Woeste: Germany not closing aid taps for Malawi

He, however, said the Joyce Banda administration had proven to be taking the country towards the right direction prompting the Germany Government to increase its aid to Malawi.

Said Woeste: “We see President Joyce Banda is very much interested in the issues of governance …basically we are on the same page there; both of us are interested in governance, both of us are interested in transparence and I think there are a lot of positive and good signs and this is my daily reporting back home that Malawi is going back on the right track.

“But the economy was in such a disastrous shape back in March such that a turn round in the next few weeks was impossible and this was based on experts.”

The Germany Ambassador to Malawi said his government had decided to disburse more money to Malawi to support various programs for the next 3 years adding that citing the increase of funding to the country’s Social Cash Transfer by 7million Euros as an example.

He therefore said there had not been a decision in ‘yes’ or ‘no’ regarding Germany’s support to the country’s budget system.

“It is absolutely wrong to say the Germany Government will not be supporting Malawi Government with regards to budget assistance in the next two years. This is still under consideration and I think this is well known and you can see and prove it in the papers,” said Woeste, adding “I’m really, really, disappointed that people want to misunderstand this.”

At a press briefing held in Lilongwe Information Minister Moses Kunkuyu expressed surprise over the media reports which said there would be no budgetary support to Malawi from the UK, Germany and other development partners.

Said Kunkuyu: “We  have not had any communication on the matter but what we know is that way back in March during the old government there were such fears from donors but now the same donors are impressed with how this government is performing.”

Kunkuyu said if the donors were still not happy with the direction taken by the new administration the country would have witnessed the re-opening of the British/Malawi bilateral relations among other positive indicators.

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