MALAWI

Jayesh Patel

Malawi

Faizal Okhai

4

HEALTHCARE:

SINGLE OBJECTIVE/GOAL OF THE PILLAR

CALL TO ACTION:

  • Introduce tax exempting donations of over MK5 million by private sector to manage the COVID-19

  • Share contingency medical plans with the private sector to enable it contribute towards the safety, protection and prevention of the pandemic and its impact among citizens

  • Train and prepare response teams in surveillance, case management, infection prevention and control, and laboratory

  • Enhance surveillance at all points of entry

  • Focus on capacitating the isolation and treatment centres to ensure that they are able to handle the numbers

  • Provision of necessities for simple hygiene like buckets and soap for handwashing

  • Setup a fund for the private sector to contribute towards health sector initiatives

  • Engage with organisations like UNICEF and OXFAM who have expressed interest to assist

  • Engage with University of Malawi / Polytechnic to develop local solutions such as ventilators and oxygenators

TIMELINE:

  • Ongoing

 

 

PROPOSED MEMBERS:

Medical Organisations including Doctors and Nurses Associations; Medical College, College of Nursing, Ministry of Health, Malawi Defence Force; Malawi Police Service.

Lobby donors to supply critical medical supplies; equipment; personnel and commence construction of Field Hospitals (in large covered areas such as COMESA hall or empty warehouses in Kanengo for example) with immediate effect

 

Look at setting up more substantive quarantine centres countrywide

2

SAFETY AND SECURITY:

SINGLE OBJECTIVE/GOAL OF THE PILLAR

CALL TO ACTION:

  • A B C

TIMELINE:

  • Ongoing

 

 

PROPOSED MEMBERS:

MPS; MDF, Neighborhood watch organizations, Private Security Firms

5

LOGISTICS:

Content and Communication

SINGLE OBJECTIVE/GOAL OF THE PILLAR

Credible, Correct & Targeted Communication Resulting in behavior change

CALL TO ACTION:

  • Extensively sensitize the public about the outbreak control measures, including contact tracing, quarantine, and individual and community social distancing;

  • Develop and implement risk communication plans

TIMELINE:

  • Ongoing

 

 

 

PROPOSED MEMBERS:

Ministry of Information; WHO; MACRA; Telcos, religious groupings

7

LABOUR:

Job Protection and Income Continuity

SINGLE OBJECTIVE/GOAL OF THE PILLAR

  • Secure Jobs

CALL TO ACTION:

  • Review of the Pension Act – reduce period in which employees can access funds

  • Enactment of Regulations that allow for pay cuts

  • Suspension of PAYE and adjust tax-free income band of PAYE to MWK100,000 per month

  • Loan Facilities to larger companies in addition to MEDF for SMEs

  • Affordability of Internet Services

  • Caution in Operation of Public and Rural Markets

  • ECAM calls upon Government in consultation with the private sector to come up with a list of essential goods services and industries

  • Put in place a contingency plan in case of full lockdown to support the most vulnerable

TIMELINE:

  • Ongoing

 

 

PROPOSED MEMBERS:

Ministry of Trade, Ministry of Labour, Pension Funds; Large Scale Employers

8

AGRICULTURE AND FOOD

SINGLE OBJECTIVE/GOAL OF THE PILLAR

CALL TO ACTION:

Refer “TAG - Food and Agricultural Security Discussions.docx”

  • ADMARC/NFRA to buy stocks aggressively for reserves

  • Warehouse receipt system to be encouraged

  • The government should replenish the silos forthwith

  • It is crucial that tobacco sales continue

  • Government needs to discuss with neighbouring countries/logistics authorities to allow movement/export

  • Safety Net Food basket - Government needs to provide minimum cash payments so that families are able to buy food

  • Crop planning 2021  - Government needs to work a plan on how they will support farmers for next year crop

  • Try to operate as normal as possible. Closing down businesses/factories could be counter-intuitive

  • Zero rate VAT essential goods which have not been done on an all-round basis

  • Provide clear operational guidelines for essential industries for vehicle and labour movement

  • Lockdown is not the way forward. Perhaps a partial lockdown due to the informal economy and market. Need to have an African solution. Possibly look at splitting areas like cities, or districts

TIMELINE:

  • Ongoing

 

 

 

PROPOSED MEMBERS:

Donors; Aid Agencies; NGOs, DODMA; FMCGs; religious groupings

9

BUSINESS ASSISTANCE 

SINGLE OBJECTIVE/GOAL OF THE PILLAR

  • Ensure business activity can continue

CALL TO ACTION:

  • WHT to be lowered by 50%

  • Widening of zero tax band for PAYE to MWK 200,000

  • Corporation tax to be lowered by a minimum of 20% for the current year (2020)

  • Allow the Kwacha to depreciate in line with the economies around Malawi to not disadvantage exporters in Malawi.  Range of 10%-20%

  • Trade routes to stay open.

  • Employee welfare – Clause that allows employers to send employees on furlough, rather than retrenchment.

  • Pension exemptions. Tag 2 team handling Job Protection and Income Continuity

  • Maximum demand charges by ESCOM to be removed for at least 3 months

  • A full lockdown of the country has a significant adverse impact on the general population. Government should consider locking down specific high risk areas based on the scientific evidence available. Other areas to operate as normal.

  • Consider charging for tests for those who can afford the tests as a way of generating revenue to acquire more test kits that will be made available as free tests to citizens who worse off.

  • There have been quite a few reports in the media with regards to funds coming into the country to assist with the Covid-19 fight. Request for reports in terms of how these funds are being utilized by Government

  • Supply Chain Stabilisation

  • RBM should consider introducing an extended lending facility to banks from overnight to 3 months or more

  • RBM should further consider reducing the policy rate by at least 100 basis points to cushion the potential slowdown in the economy

  • Government should pay all arrears owed to businesses including Value Added Tax (VAT) arrears and withholding tax refunds so that businesses have adequate income to meet wages and other statutory obligations

  • VAT should be removed from essential products such as drugs, medical utensils, soap and food

  • Maximum demand on electricity for industries should be waived

  • Government should pay all arrears owed to businesses including Value Added Tax (VAT) arrears and withholding tax refunds

  • Giving a Pay As You Earn (P.A.Y.E) and Corporate Tax moratoria

  • Suspending payment of pension contributions from both the employers and employees

  • Reduce to 50 percent or suspend payment of utility bills

  • Supply Chain Continuity

  • Fast-track submission of this list to the host countries who are our major suppliers

  • Cargo traffic should be exempted from entry restrictions in order to keep the economy functional

TIMELINE:

  • Ongoing

 

PROPOSED MEMBERS:

Ministry of Trade & Industry, MRA, Large Taxpayers, Financial Institutions; Infrastructure providers such as ESCOM & EGENCO, Telcos, Produce transporters

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