Grain Traders and Processors Association (GTPA) has faulted the World Bank for continuing to withhold about K60 billion ($80 million) budget support, at a time the country is reeling from the effects of floods.
In its position paper to the Bretton Wood institution, GTPA said as a key player on the market, they will never agree neither support some of the recommendations from the World Bank.
The association said the response to the floods will require a substantial amount of money and cutting budgetary support is an indirect strategy to frustrate the current economic gains.
Reads the paper in part: “We note with great concern that the position World Bank has taken is being influenced by some donors in Lilongwe. We would like to put it on record that some of the information in the said recommendation resonates with some recommendations for other donor-funded research based documents which, as a key player on the market, have never been comfortable with as we fear they are protecting the interests of some donor funded institutions.”
It said tampering with the Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation (Admarc) structure is refusing Malawi to attain its food sovereignty.
“Much as we appreciated some recommendations, there were areas that required a lot of work and consultations so that the recommendations are based on facts not influenced by interested institutions,” reads the paper.
World Bank country manager for Malawi Greg Toulmin told The Nation last week that the bank continues to work closely with the Malawi Government to ensure that ‘phase two’ actions are fully implemented before releasing the funds.
He said as part of the operation, the World Bank and Capital Hill agreed on a set of actions in agriculture and fiscal management that needed to be completed in two phases before money was released.
Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development Goodall Gondwe last week also blamed “some donors in Lilongwe” for influencing the World Bank to continue withholding budget support.
Due to the non-disbursement of the World Bank’s budget support, the minister was forced to trim allocations to some ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) in the national budget during the Mid-Year Budget Review in February.
The withholding of the support also meant a widening fiscal deficit, pegged at K255 billion, a development which pushed up domestic borrowing from K164.2 billion to K214.7 billion in the 2018/19 financial year.
Gondwe earlier said Cabinet had not met to discuss proposed Admarc reforms, as they would be undertaken by the next government after May 21 2019 Tripartite Elections.