Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Kondwani Nankhumwa has said rural growth centres taking shape across the country are vital for boosting the country’s economic growth.
Nankhumwa made the remarks on Wednesday at Chitekesa in Phalombe when he officially handed over heifers to the second cohort of beneficiaries of a dairy farming sub-project under the Rural Growth Centre Initiative.
He said the introduction of a centre at Chitekesa has brought meaningful developments such as infrastructure, skills and other services, all of which are bringing structural and economic growth.
He said the growth centre pilot projects are taking place in Phalombe, Mangochi, Nsanje and Mzimba.
The rural growth centre concept sees the construction of markets, schools, stadiums, halls, telecentres and the promotion of small-scale businesses, among other activities in rural communities.
Commenting on the matter, African Development Bank (AfDB) country representative, Andrew Mwaba, said he was impressed with the progress of the project and the bank was ready to continue supporting the initiative.
Mwaba said the project targets to increase incomes of at least 12 000 households, train and establish over 3 000 small-scale businesses, and support over 3 000 people in establishing village savings and loans.
The rural growth centres are also meant to restrict massive urbanisation which is said to be at a high rate of 6.8 percent—Mana