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Lilongwe gets tough on business licensing

By Harold Mtepatepa

Lilongwe DC(C) flanked by the council Chairperson and Director of Finance keenly following the presentation (1)

Lilongwe, April 3 Mana: Lilongwe District Council has appealed to business owners in the district to renew their annual business licenses for the government financial year which starts on April 1 or risk losing their licenses by the end of May 2023.

This is in line with the 2014 Business Licensing Act, which stipulates that every business entity must have a licence to operate in the country which also empowers Local Government authorities to license locally owned businesses.

Lilongwe District Commissioner Lawford Palani, told journalists at press briefing in Lilongwe that the council expects every business entity to renew its licence by 31 May.

He said every business that would operate without valid licences risks closure.

“Business owners have often felt bad whenever we close them down but we are now reminding them to renew their licences before the said date,” Palani said.

Palani further highlighted that licencing activities help the council in payment of staff salaries and honoraria of councilors, construction of markets among other things.

Council Chairperson Dan Mtayamanja said business licensing activities are done frequently to check illegal businesses and trading, compliance with various legal provisions and hygiene and safety issues.

“We are now ready for inspection in readiness for issuance of the licences for 2023/2024 year. If we find shortfalls within the business premises, owners would have to address such issues first to conform to the council’s standards,” Mtayamanja said.

The council managed to collect a total of MK797 million through locally business revenues in the just ended financial year.

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