By Wahard Betha
The Malawi Government has called upon mining investors to set up mineral processing plants within the country and desist from exporting unprocessed minerals.
Speaking while presenting the 2023-24 Mid-Year Budget Review delivered in the National Assembly, Minister of Finance Simplex Chithyola Banda said local value addition will increase the revenue generated from the sector.
Banda said: “Madam Speaker, the Ministry of Mining has embarked on establishing the value of the mineral wealth in the country.”
“Government will also ensure that investors in our mining sector should be encouraged to include setting up of processing plants within Malawi for value addition of the minerals to fetch higher royalty revenue than unprocessed minerals.”
“Government will work to expect about US$1.5 billion over the next three years in discounted mineral proceeds.”
Banda said the Kauniuni exercise which was conducted under the World Bank financed project called “Mining Governance and Growth Support project” produced a report that only indicated geological nature of areas.
He, therefore, disclosed that the Malawi Government has engaged the World Bank for a second Kauniuni assignment for an in-depth study that would lead to the revelation of the quantities, quality and value of valuable minerals in the targeted areas to enable Government to negotiate with potential investors for advance or upfront payment of mineral revenues prior to commencement of mineral extraction and production.
The 2023/24 Financial Year’s approved budget has been revised based on budget performance during the first half of the financial year and projected performance for the second half.
It has also taken into consideration the emerging fiscal pressures under statutory budget lines, grants to subverted organizations and social benefits.