India’s Export and Import (Exim) Bank has disbursed $180 million (about K132 billion) to Malawi since 2008, with the bank committing to provide more credit facilities to the country on bankable projects.
The disbursements over a 10-year period, according to Vice- President Saulos Chilima, have helped Malawi acquire agricultural equipment and machinery critical for the implementation of the Green Belt Initiative (GBI) and agriculture merchanisation.
Part of the money has also been used to construct three fuel strategic reserves in Mzuzu, Blantyre and Lilongwe as well as the construction of cotton and sugar processing plants.
The amount was disclosed on Monday in New Dehli, India, where Chilima, who is attending the 13th Confederation for Indian Industry (CII) Exim Bank Conclave on India-Africa Project Partnership, met the delegation from the bank.
During the meeting, he informed the Exim Bank delegation that the Malawi Government has already submitted a $400 million (K293 billion) credit request to India for various projects.
Chilima said the money would be used for the construction of convention centres in Malawi’s major cities, Lower Fufu Hydro Power Station, Lambilambi Dam in Mzuzu City and water projects for the country’s regional water boards.
“I would like to thank Exim Bank for the continued financial assistance provided towards Malawi government’s programmes that are aimed at transforming the country,” he said.
Besides that, Chilima said Lilongwe will also be approaching the Exim Bank for lines of credit to help support the implementation of the newly-launched third Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS III).
“The government of Malawi will, therefore, be approaching your institution in the months ahead for lines of credit to implement some of the flagship projects under MGDS III, including the Shire Valley Irrigation Scheme,” he said.
In an interview, Exim Bank deputy managing director Debasish Mallick said the meeting was successful as his team informed Chilima of what is expected of Malawi to get the lines of credit for projects.
He said: “The VP and the entire team requested certain clarifications and guidance as to how various projects can be implemented in Malawi with assistance from the Government of India and the Exim Bank of India.
“We discussed the way to get assistance; the fastest way that can speed up the entire thing and that which is going to implement the project. We will now jointly work to find out what could be the best way to optimise things. Meanwhile, the Malawi Government will also let us know whatever types of projects it wants to execute.”
Exim Bank is the premier export finance institution in India, established in 1982 under Export-Import Bank of India Act of 1981.
The bank extends Lines of Credit (LoC) to enable Indian exporters to enter new markets or expand their business in existing export markets.