The Department for International Development (DfID) on Monday pledged more support to the Malawi Government with an announcement of a £20 million (K12.9 billion) grant.
UK Secretary of State for International Development Justine Greening made the announcement when Malawi President Joyce Banda made a courtesy visit at the DfID office in East Kilbride, Scotland.
Said Greening: “Her Excellency has just been in office as President of Malawi for less than a year, but her government has already achieved a lot.”
She said Banda took over the country when the economy was on the brink of collapse.
Greening also congratulated the President and her government for the bold, courageous and overdue decision to devalue the Malawi currency and to embark on a robust economic recovery plan (ERP) to help the country get back on its economic feet.
Banda was also commended for repealing some of the ‘bad laws’ which were restricting freedom of speech and political choice, among others.
“President Joyce Banda has strengthened Malawi’s ties with its neighbours, repaired strained relationship with donors, including the UK, and got back on track with the International Monetary Fund [programme],” she said.
Greening said the grant will work towards HIV and Aids-related programmes, in addition to the many programmes that DfID funds in Malawi.
She said UK’s bilateral support has increased significantly over the past year and by the end of March, the UK will have spent £115 million (K74.5 billion) in Malawi since President Banda came into power last April.
In her remarks, the President thanked the UK Government and DfID for the grant support to Malawi.
She said her government will ensure that the money is used for the targeted programmes, and assured of Malawi’s commitment to alleviate poverty among Malawians.
Later, Banda had a strategic working lunch meeting with the private sector in Scotland.