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Malawi's AGOA exports tumble

Malawi's exports to the US through the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) have fallen for the last two years and government has said it will jack up its actions to improve the situation.
Malawi reaped US$44.4m in 2008 as compared to US$50.8m it realised in 2007 and the country has so far amassed US$9.7m in exports in the first quarter of the year projecting a decline by 5% according to trade statistics.

At the same period last year Malawi reaped US$9.9m according to United States International Trade Commission (USITC).

AGOA is a US government run facility that targets a grouping of 39 Least Developed Countries where Malawi also belongs to, which export over 20 000 different products to the US that include textiles products duty free.

The commission also indicated that Malawi's total exports under the AGOA facility fell by 13% last year.

Derby Makwelero, Malawi's Director of Trade in the Industry and Trade Ministry, says government would want to ensure that it does not slacken on its AGOA exports as has been the trend.

“We are geared to reverse the current state of affairs and we will rebuild the export base,” he said saying they will achieve this by enhancing the infrastructure and production capacity.

Makwelero said a number of issues will also be reviewed in order to fully build the manufacturing base, like issues to do with energy, road network as well as identifying cheaper access to the sea.

About Gregory Gondwe

Gregory Gondwe is a Malawian journalist who started writing in 1993. He is also a media consultant assisting several international journalists pursuing assignments in Malawi. He holds a Diploma and an Intermediate Certificate in Journalism among other media-related certificates. He can be contacted on . Follow him on Twitter at @Kalipochi.
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Read more: AGOA, African growth

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