As Malawi’s elections come closer [May 19], the local
business community has given presidential candidates some advice about private enterprise and how
it can thrive.
Business leaders say Malawians are eager for
development, and local businesses do not want to waste time, or elect corrupt
Mike Mlombwa, the president of the Indigenous
Business Association of Malawi, said the next government should empower local
Mlombwa said the time has come for locals to
take a leading role in controlling the economy rather than foreigners. “What we are saying is that there are a lot
of foreigners here running businesses that are supposed to be done by locals.
For example, some of them are running restaurants, car [rentals], spare parts
shops, [and] stationary shops which are supposed to be run by locals,” he says.
He says his association has been appealing to
its members to vote for leaders who would have the interests of local
businesses at heart.
Mlombwa says the major problem is what he
calls the country’s weak business policies.
He says what local businesses need from the
next government is a 51:49 investment policy, in which locals will own 51
percent and investors owning 49 percent in any business venture coming into