United States Ambassador Jeanine Jackson has said Malawi’s products have potential to fare well on regional markets.
Jeanine said this when she visited Carlsberg Malawi in Blantyre last week.
The US envoy wanted to appreciate operations of one of the successful private companies in the country.
“Currently, Carlsberg Malawi produces just enough for the domestic market, but there is possibility of exploring markets in the region.
“Malawi does not have to export far because its products have huge potential in regional markets.
“We are working on a number of activities with Malawi which would hopefully increase regional trade,” she said.
Jackson was also interested to know how the company is surviving the economic challenges facing the country.
She also wanted to understand some of the company’s innovations and technologies such as bottle recycling.
“I am interested in knowing a little more about the private sector because it is the one that can make Malawi grow and ensure that the Economic Recovery Plan becomes a success,” said Jackson.
Carlsberg Malawi chief executive officer Abel Chanje said they were happy with Jackson’s visit because it “probably means the company is making an impact in the donor community, too, through its operations in the country”.
He said despite the tough economic environment in the country, Carlsberg Malawi has been posting profits.
Chanje said the company will build a bottling plant in Lilongwe, but the beer will still be brewed in Blantyre.
“The beer will be brewed in Blantyre and tracked to Lilongwe where it will be bottled. This will reduce transport costs apart from ensuring availability of beer in the Central and Northern regions,” he said.
Carlsberg Malawi has eight plants in the country, four in the South, three in the Centre and one in the North.
In 2013, Carlsberg Malawi’s investment in production machinery includes K1.4 billion (about $3.5m) for the new PET line and building in Lilongwe, K640 million (about $1.6m) for further expansion of Lilongwe plant for beer filling and K300 million (about $770 000) for a waste water treatment plant in Blantyre.