By Prince Justice Banda
Lilongwe, March 1, MANA: President Dr. Lazarus Chakwera has justified the country’s need to fully pursue its vision towards establishment of the mega farms as it will help in enhancing economic empowerment of among the youth as well as Small and Medium Enterprises (SME’s).
Speaking during the 50th Parliamentary Session in response to question 2 under Standing Order 70B following the State of the National Address (SONA), Dr. Chakwera emphasised on how his administration is determined to unlock the economic prosperity of both the youth and SME’s through their inclusion in the country’s pursuit of food security and economic empowerment through mega farm initiative.
He said his administration is ready to accommodate farming skills and technicalities from youths of Malawian origin who are or have been in a number of agro-based countries overseas such as Israel studying the same.
“It has appeased my administration that if we are to borrow a leaf from countries overseas and put in use their farming skills and technicalities for our own benefit, then we must accommodate those same skills brought by our own youths who went there to study agriculture related courses,” Chakwera said.
On the other hand, Chakwera’s administration through Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) is planning to offer a number of fiscal tax incentives to attract several youth led investments and other SME’s along the implementation of the mega farm initiative.
“My government is planning to put on the table a number of tax incentives to attract a lot of investments and partnership from the youths and other SME’s so that at the very end they can graduate to economically independent individuals or entities,” He said.
The president’s idea to scrutinise fiscal incentives targeting the youth and SME’s concurs with the previous pleas made by Thomas Munthali the Director of the National Planning Commission (NPC) to MRA during Fiscal Tax Incentive Workshop in Lilongwe last year.
In his remarks Munthali admitted that there is a lot to be done towards economic empowerment of the youth and SME’s if Malawi is to reduce poverty.
“As a country, we need not to leave the youths behind more especially the SME’s in as far as economic development at a national level is concerned. Youth have not only the energy but also the capacity to better merge their skills and vision with technology, hence if their SME’s are given wider volumes of opportunities in decision making, we can do better economically as a country,” Munthali said.
Meanwhile government has already commenced with some of the works towards implementation of these mega farms in various districts across the country.