The business community at Malomo in Ntchisi District has complained that lack of banks at the trading centre is negatively affecting entrepreneurship.
The businesspersons raised the concern on Thursday during a media tour which Ntchisi Organisation for Youth Development (Noyd) organised.
One of the entrepreneurs, Lovemore Gondwe, said conducting business at the trading centre is risky because they are forced to keep cash in their houses or travel 11 Kilometres to Kasungu to bank the money.
Noyd programmes officer Clement Zindodo concurred with Gondwe, saying banks are the hub of economic development, especially now that many people are doing businesses.
But in interview on Friday, Bankers Association of Malawi president Misheck Esau said opening a branch depends on an area’s business viability.
“Banks are in business so they open a branch at a particular place depending on the demand that is there. Furthermore, they look at facilities such as electricity, water and good road network. I have never been to Malomo Trading Centre, but if demand and all these facilities are there I hope banks will open branches soon. Indeed banks are important for development and [they] will definitely consider this concern from people of Malomo,” said Esau.
Malomo Trading Centre has electricity, water supply and a tarmac road to Kasungu and Nkhotakota.
Apart from banks, Malomo also lacks a service station, forcing residents to rely on fuel black market. n