Planetarium Institute encourages joint ventures to fly produce to US

With only three years remaining to the end of African Growth and Opportunity Act project , Planetarium Team leader remain upbeat that Malawi can edge out other countries to become bigger exporter in the sub-Saharan region.

Charles Nyekanyeka a co-founder of Planetarium institute has urged existing and upcoming investors to pool resources together to enjoy from the economies of scale when exporting their commodities on the international market especially in AGOA designated regions of South Africa and America.

He was saying this on Tuesday during a press briefing at crossroads hotel in Lilongwe during which he highlighted areas that accords opportunities to local SMSEs to do well in the next competitions of AGOA before winding up in 2025.

Charles Nyekanyeka

“We are currently appealing to the existing exporters who are exporting to South Africa and United States that they should join the competition of AGOA so that we can profile who they are, which value chain are they exporting to AGOA designated countries by among other things identifying their institution capacity.

“But more importantly we would want to encourage our exporters in the country to avoid working individually but they should find means of combining their commodities that should be sent in bulk aimed at reducing transport cost and ease financial problems to purchase state of the art machineries to produce quality things that offer them a chance to get the AGOA export award in the next remaining three years,” Nyekanyeka said.

According to Nyekanyeka AGOA has an interest in selected value chain of sesame oil, moringa, natural honey, mangoes, chilli, paprika, pigeon peas, beans, oil cake, Macademia, sugar and tea.

He said currently Malawi is on top four in the production of macadamia in the world.

President of the Cross Border Association of Malawi Steven Yohane agreed that unity and joint ventures can give them an opportunity to bring home the AGOA award in the remaining three years.

He, however cited competition amongst themselves as one factor that is reason for lack of joint ventures for businesses in the country.

On his part USAID Trade Investment Hub country representative in Malawi Dagrous Msiska explained the objectives and importance of the competition saying the award is one way of bolstering African economic growth and reduce poverty through promotion of trade on the international market.

“The USA trade hub has been working with the ecosystem since the project started in 2000 and right now it is heading towards its final phase as it is ending in 2025.The ecosystem comprises the government and private sector largely to drive the trade to the US because of capacity that has been belt locally,” Msiska said.

In partnership with a South African based agency, the Eastern Cape Development Corporation(ECDC), Planetarium Institute has been promoting regional exporter award 2021 in Malawi .The award was in South Africa hosted by ECDC on 8 December where eight countries participated.

Nationally a Malawian firm Conforzi Plantation Limited exporters of tea and macadamia became winners and took part in the competition for the first time at this year’s exporter award in South Africa while Homes from Karonga emerged winner of the best exporter to U.S where businesses from Botwasana, Malawi, Eswathini, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia participated.

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