Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, Goodall Gondwe, has disclosed government’s plans to turn the Malawi Enterprise Development Fund (Medf) into a farmers’ bank.
Gondwe made the remarks in Lilongwe on Wednesday on the sidelines of an agreement signing ceremony between the governments of Malawi and Japan totaling 200 Japanese Yen.
This comes against the backdrop of reports that the fund has been struggling to operate as a loan revolving fund due to the high default rates since its establishment in 2005.
The high default rates are a result of the political interference into the operations of the fund, which prompted majority of the beneficiaries to regard the loans as gifts.
Gondwe said the major objective of the bank will be to provide the best customer services with a personal touch while committing to meet the financial needs of farmers.
“That’s one thing we have been thinking about. And I think that is the direction we need to take in ensuring that small scale farmers are accessing affordable loans to increase their production,” he said.
Gondwe said professionals will be appointed to run the affairs of the proposed bank to ensure it is free from political interference as has been the case with Medf.
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