+Germany has committed 45 million euros (about K37.3 billion) grant to Malawi for implementation of various development programmes geared towards poverty alleviation and social-economic development.
During a cocktail reception on Wednesday evening marking the end of two-day negotiations between Germany and Malawi in Lilongwe, Secretary to the Treasury Cliff Chiunda and head of the German delegation Alois Schneider signed the bilateral cooperation agreement on behalf of their governments.
In an interview on the sidelines of the event, Schneider said Germany expects Malawi to prudently use the resources to benefit the citizenry because German taxpayers look forward to their funds helping their Malawian counterparts.
He said: “Malawi is one of the key countries in the southern African region that we support. We very much support the government’s efforts in fighting corruption. We made it very clear during our negotiations that one of our strong conditions is the need for the government to fight against corruption which is of utmost importance in our policy.”
Schneider said he was impressed with the youth programmes being implemented in Malawi after visiting a primary school in Kasungu which is benefiting from German support.
On his part, Chiunda said the financial commitment signifies the confidence the German Government has in Malawi; hence, the funds will prudently be spent as a show of gratitude.
Reacting to the call to strengthen the fight against corruption, he said: “Fighting corruption and prudent spending is government’s priority. We are also fighting to instil accountability in the systems.
“The funds will also help us to strengthen public finance management systems and I would like to assure Malawians that government is determined to ensure these resources are used for the intended purpose.”
Chiunda said government is working to strengthen public finance management system through the on-going implementation of the new Integrated Financial Information Management System (Ifmis), government’s electronic payment platform that was found wanting in 2013 after it was abused to siphon billions from public coffers.
The amount adds up to 91.3 million euros (about K75.2 billion) in commitments since the last government-to-government negotiations between Germany and Malawi held in 2017.
Among others, the funds will be spent on focus areas of the German Government in Malawi, including social protection, private sector development in rural areas, quality education and quality health service delivery. The funding also contains a component of strengthening public finance management systems, according to a joint statement released on Wednesday. According to Treasury, when Malawi Government signs a technical cooperation, with Germany, the assistance comes through GIZ and when the agreement is a financial cooperation the support comes through German Government’s KfW.