IMF advises Malawi to stop relying on donors

Despite being impressed with the country’s performance on some of the conditions it set under Extended Credit Facility (ECF), the International Monitory Fund (IMF) has advised Malawi not to rely on donors in finding long term solutions to address its current economic challenges.

Malawi’s renowned economist professor Mathews Chikaonda recently also asked government authorities to put up strong measures that wound see Malawi move away from donor dependence for its economic growth.

“We need to expand the taxes. We need the private sector to grow so that there is job creation. No country has reduced poverty without the involvement of the private sector,” Chikaonda said in his presentation at the all-inclusive stakeholders’ Conference in Blantyre organized by Public Affairs Committee (PAC).

And the IMF Mission Chief Tsidi Tsikata told journalists in Lilongwe last week that there was a need for the country to find long term solution to its economic challenges and not relying on donors who have their own challenges, which need to be addressed as well.

IMF head of mission: Tsidi Tsikata

“As long term, I would advise the authorities to put up measures that will address the country’s economic challenges and not put donor assistance as a priority. Donors do have their own priorities different from Malawi, therefore it is difficult to help always,” Tsikata said.

His remarks came after revealing that the monitory fund will make its final decision in December, 2012 if it is to release cash amounting to US$19.9 million (K68 billion) following a successful review of the new Extended Credit Facility (ECF) by the fund’s mission team.

The IMF Mission team which has been in the country for two weeks established that monetary authorities in the country have adhered to the recommended fiscal discipline measures it set.

Tsikata said most quantitative targets for end September 2012 were met including those on the level of net international reserves of the Reserve Bank of Malawi, and on the government’s net borrowing.

He noted that all structural benchmarks scheduled for implementation by end September were met including publication of the monthly revenue collections of the Malawi Revenue Authority in local newspapers.

The development comes as great news to the country, which of late has been sailing in turbulent times in as far as the economy is concerned.

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