Malawi President Peter Mutharika on Thursday held briefing reporters on his delegation to Egypt and hailed the deal that combine the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), the South African Development Community (SADC), and the East African Community (EAC) into a free-trade zone.
“This Summit was one of the most important meetings that my government has attended so far,” said Mutharika.
Mutharika said the trade deal is an important milestone for the economic future for the continent and that explained that for Malawi to fully tap into the benefits of the TFTA it has to be able to produce more goods that can be sold to the extra market.
“The TFTA agreement itself is vital in that the market for our goods in Africa has grown by 25 more countries,” Mutharika said.
Commenting on what Malawi government is doing to provide favourable conditions that will attract Foreign Direct Investors, Mutharika said it now takes only five days to complete registration processes instead of the 95 days before the Malawi Investment Trade Centre was established.
“There are four key areas that we have prioritized in order to attract Foreign Direct Investments and also benefit from the TFTA. That is production of goods targeting the new market; value addition; exports and infrastructure development.
“On infrastructure development we are addressing the need for enough power for investments. Currently our electricity generation capacity is at 351 Megawatts and we need at least an additional 100 Megawatts to start attracting investors in the mining sector,” he said.
Nonetheless, the investment security profile for Malawi is very competitive. A recent survey has rated Malawi second in Africa after Botswana for upholding the rule of law and 62 in the world.
Mutharika also appealed on the media to “explain” to the masses on the benefits of the trade deal.
He expressed optimism that the country will attract more investors to concentrate on trade as opposed to aide and also achieve economic independence at the end of his first term in 2019.