Malawi Launches Buy Malawi StrategyApr 20, 2016
Malawi has launched the Buy Malawi Strategy (BMS) in a bid to promote locally produced goods and services. UNDP supported the development and launch of the strategy in collaboration with the Ministry of Industry and Trade and the private sector.
UNDP Resident Representative in Malawi, Mia Seppo commended the Ministry of Industry and Trade for its leadership and commitment towards the formulation of the BMS, saying the strategy complements other important ongoing initiatives of the Government of Malawi aimed at advancing the industrialization agenda for Malawi.
“The success of the Buy Malawi Strategy will require effective collaboration and strong partnerships between the private and public sectors,” said Mia in Lilongwe at the launch of the strategy attended by a cross section of society including Malawi’s President, cabinet ministers, senior government officials, private sector representatives and local producers.
She then underscored the importance of buying locally produced goods and services.
“Buying locally has countless positive effects. It contributes towards job creation and it’s a safeguard for existing jobs; it contributes towards poverty reduction and it grows local investment; it reinforces the industrial base and encourages self-reliance and food security; it addresses the trade deficit account and encourages entrepreneurship and innovation,” she said.
On his part, President Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika thanked UNDP for the financial and technical support in the development and launch of the Strategy.
The President called on people to support the local industry. He also called on local producers to strive for quality and reasonable pricing in order to stay competitive.
“People will not buy from you simply because you are Malawian, but because your products are of high quality and your prices are reasonable to compete on the global market,” the President said, stressing that Malawians deserve quality products too.
During the launch the President outlined some measures to boost the local industry. Among the measures, the President mentioned, as a way of kicking off implementation of the strategy, “all public procuring entities will buy at least 30% of their goods and services from Malawi based enterprises; the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development will prioritize allocation of land to enterprise and investors that intend to manufacture goods and provide services on our land; commercial banks to put emphasis on lending money to enterprises that produce goods and services locally rather than only emphasizing on enterprises that import finished products for re-sell. The President also urged the hospitality industry to set aside a day when they will be serving local dishes. He also declared 18th March every year as Malawi Day.
President Mutharika brandishes a copy of the strategy to mark official launch of the BMS.