Former Finance Minister and celebrated economist Goodall Gondwe has commended President Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera and his administration for securing US$350 million from the Second Compact of the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC).
Chakwera this week signed MCC’s Malawi Transport and Land Compact in Washington DC on the sidelines of his participation at the UNGA Summit in New York, US.
The multi billion kwacha will go towards construction of 300 kilometres of roads across Malawi in the next five years.
Despite being a Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) vice president for the North, Gondwe commended Chakwera for the signing the agreement, describing the compact as of great value for the social economic transformation of the country.
“The amount that President Chakwera is the amount that was already during the previous administration and nothing has changed, this is very commendable and I would like to congratulate him for that,” he said.
According to Gondwe, the package will have both short and long term impact for Malawi.
“This will largely have long term benefits for the country, for the short term, depending on the arrangement on how the money will be disbursed, it will help the country on containing the current foreign exchange challenges,” Gondwe observed.
“It will help us acquire the amount of money they will spend in Malawi as they will buy Malawi kwacha in return of foreign exchange for that amount and this will help us in short term,” Added Gondwe who is a well-respected economist.
He further disclosed that part of this package will be crucial in job creation for Malawi apart from changing the infrastructure development for the country’s rural areas hence sparring economic activities in various households.
“At the moment we have two roads, that M1 from Nsanje to Chitipa and the Lake Shore M5 road, but we do not have road system that transact from west to east, road that can connect a lot of rural areas to M1, this package will have a huge economic impact for the country,” he said.
The project will greatly reduce transport costs and strengthening land administration, as it will cover the upgrade of various roads in Mzimba, Rumphi, Lilongwe, Kasungu, Mchinji, Ntcheu, Balaka and Mangochi.
In 2018 Malawi was selected for a second compact following its strong commitment to democratic governance and successful implementation of the first 350-million-dollar energy compact.
Speaking during the signing ceremony, MCC chief executive officer, Alice Albright, noted that the fresh compact will create a range of economic opportunities for Malawians.
On his part, Finance Minister Sosten Gwengwe – who signed on behalf of the Malawi government – expressed the government’s commitment to ensuring the project’s success.
During the meeting between President Lazarus Chakwera and USA secretary of State Anthony Blinken in Washington, the US government also pledged its support towards reasoning with the IMF to reach a deal with Malawi for the ECF.
The deal with IMF is being touted as key in easing down the current economic pressure the country is going through.
When he took over the reins of power, President Chakwera promised to continue with all development programs and projects initiated by the former DPP regime in addition to initiating new development programs.
Meanwhile, commentators are describing the President official duties in America, where he attended this years United Nations General Assembly UNGA as very successful.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :