President Peter Mutharika is in the People’s Republic of China for a five-day visit that should unveil the next phase of Chinese funded development projects in the country over the next five years.
Mutharika’s takes the ‘Look East’ policy to Beijing to further trade deals to help rescue Malawi’s ailing economy, which is suffering the effects of an aid freeze by Western lenders following a growing scandal over government graft known as Cashgate which has been bedevilling the nation since 2005.
Minister of Foreign and International Cooperation George Chaponda described the visit as the start of yet another window of opportunities in the areas of development, trade and investment.
Mutharika said he will hold bilateral talks with the Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang “to discuss the second phase of China’s development projects in Malawi.”
“I will also have an audience with several prospective investors that intend to establish new investment projects in Malawi,” said Mutharika.
Mutharika applauds the Chinese Government for playing a significant role in transforming Malawi’s socio-economic landscape since the establishment of diplomatic relations on 27th December, 2007.
Malawi, which depends on mostly Western donors to bankroll most of its development programs, has benefitted a lot of infrastructure development with support of the Chinese – of course most on long term loans.
Notable projects that China has helped Malawi include the New Parliament building in Lilongwe, Karonga-Chitipa –Road and Malawi University of Science and Technology (MUST) at Ndata in Thyolo with a 80 million U.S. dollars loan. The university has been operating since 2014.
Mutharika said China in last October provided his government a credit line of 25 million U.S. dollars in aid for which Lilongwe officials will propose a number of social projects, particularly the building of schools to tap the fund.
China recently pledged more support for Malawi in several areas including education, Health, Agriculture, Transport, Business and Telecommunication.
Other Chinese development projects in the country arethe Presidential Villas in Lilongwe, , a five-star hotel and the Bingu International Conference Centre (Bicc) and the Bingu Stadium, currently in the final phases of construction in Lilongwe.
Mutharika will also attend the global economic forum.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :