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COVID-19’s second wave threaten 2021 economic prospects–NASME

By George Lumwira

Small Scale businesses have expressed fear over the skyrocketing COVID-19 cases, arguing they might erode possible gains that are being projected in agriculture sector this year.

This has been expressed after the chamber of commerce recently painted a gloomy picture for the next 11 months and called for serious interventions from relevant authorities.

Last year, the business environment was greatly affected by the fresh presidential election and the pandemic’s restrictive measures that almost halted transactions in some sectors, as borders were closed for some months.

Meanwhile, the government projected that the economy would grow by 4.5% in 2021, attributed to promising developments in the agriculture sector which is the back bone of the country’s economy.

However, Executive Coordinator for National Association for Small and Medium Enterprises (NASME) William Mwale fears that the rising COVID-19 cases could erode any gains to be realized from agricultural sector in 2021.

“We were anticipating that 2021 will be a good year because of favourable rains the country is currently receiving. However the rising COVID cases are obviously posing a huge threat and unfortunately there is nothing we can do about it,” Mwale said.

Meanwhile, in its January 2021’s Global Economic Prospects report, the World Bank has projected that Malawi’s economy this year will grow by 3.3%.

 

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