In response to the recent devaluation of Malawi’s currency by 44%, President Lazarus Chakwera has announced the suspension of foreign trips for himself and cabinet members.
This measure aims to alleviate the impact of the currency devaluation on the country’s economy.
President Chakwera made the announcement during a televised speech, acknowledging that the decision would cause some hardship. However, he emphasized the need for all citizens to make adjustments in spending and prioritize productive areas.
The devaluation of Malawi’s currency was implemented by the Reserve Bank of Malawi to align the local currency with the U.S. dollar on the black market. This policy resulted in a significant increase in prices for various commodities, including fuel and electricity, by over 40%.
To address the economic challenges caused by the devaluation, President Chakwera suspended his foreign trips until the end of the fiscal year in March. Additionally, he extended the suspension to public officers at all levels, including those in parastatals or state-owned enterprises. Public-funded trips will remain on hold until March of the following year.
Furthermore, President Chakwera ordered a 50% reduction in fuel allowances for top government officials, including ministers. He also instructed all cabinet members currently abroad on public-funded trips to return to Malawi immediately.
These measures are part of the government’s efforts to mitigate the effects of inflation and ensure responsible financial management during this challenging period.