NAPAS: Malawi Intensely Disseminates Policy Information

NAPAS: Malawi participated in four events to disseminate policy briefs and research findings.

The New Alliance Policy Acceleration Support (NAPAS: Malawi) Project has participated in four key agricultural events across the country in September and October 2018.

  • The 15th National Agriculture Fair, September 12–15, in Blantyre
  • The 1st Farmers’ Conference, September 18–19, in Lilongwe
  • The 6th International Conference of the Pan African Fish and Fisheries Association (PAFFA6), September 24–28, Mangochi; and
  • The 3rd International Trade Fair, October 5–7, Mzuzu

Several studies and policy documents that have been developed over the years, have been disseminated.
Chief of Party for NAPAS: Malawi, Dr. Flora Nankhuni commented:

“Policies give a direction to the stakeholders to understand what is it the Ministry wants to achieve and how much of that achievement is contributing to the growth and development of Malawi. We all know that agriculture is the main stay of the economy and so if we have the vision and the will to implement that vision, it means we will bring everybody who is the stakeholder and in this case, it will be the farmers, Development partners, civil society organizations on board.”

Documents distributed:

  • About 600 value chain study policy briefs
  • 39 copies of the National Agriculture Investment Plan (NAIP)
  • 35 copies of the National Agriculture Policy (NAP)
  • 35 copies of Contract Farming Strategy
  • 21 Chichewa (local language) abridged version of the NAP, was also disseminated at the Mzuzu International Trade Fair

Two validated drafts were also showcased: The Farmer Development Organization Strategy (FODS), and the National Fertilizer Policy (NFP).

NAPAS Malawi Communications Specialist-LR
Photo: NAPAS: Malawi communications specialist explains NAPAS work at MAFAAS week

The 15th National Agriculture Fair, September 12–15, in Blantyre
The 15th National Agriculture Fair, under the theme: “Access to finance, value addition and markets- key to agri-based industrialization,” was officially opened by the President of the Republic of Malawi, Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika and his wife Professor Gertrude Mutharika.  The Minister of Agriculture, Hon. Joseph Mwanamveka, Principal Secretary, Mr. Gray Nyandule Phiri, and, 12 directors from the Ministry as well as other Cabinet Members also graced the event.

The objective of the Fair was to expose farmers, farmer groups and stakeholders within the agricultural sector to new developments in technology, including new policies, markets development, and financial arrangements and other services that might be available to them. 

The Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (MCCCI), in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development (MoAIWD), organized this year’s Fair which attracted 136 exhibitors. USAID was the largest exhibitor, occupying 19 spaces showcasing different innovations that USAID projects are bringing to the agricultural sector.

In addition to disseminating documents, NAPAS: Malawi Policy Analyst, Joseph Kanyamuka took part in a panel discussion on Agro-Industrialisation: Is there Hope for Malawi?

The 1st Farmers’ Conference, September 18–19, Lilongwe
NAPAS: Malawi took part in the two-day Malawi Forum for Agricultural Advisory Services (MaFAAS) Conference. The event was designed to enable farmers and other stakeholders in the agricultural sector from Malawi and beyond, to share experiences and lessons learned, and to network. Discussions and action plans to address particular agricultural development issues were also addressed. 

The Conference’s theme was “Hear farmers’ voices for agricultural transformation.” It aimed to reposition farmers and advisory service providers to take their rightful role in achieving the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy III. (MDGS lll)

Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development (MoAIWD) Assistant Chief Agribusiness officer, Pierson Soko, presented the draft Farmer Organization Development Strategy to over 50 farmers who attended the conference.

The 6th International Conference of the Pan African Fish and Fisheries Association (PAFFA6), September 24– 28, Mangochi
The Conference was organized by the Department of Fisheries and Lilongwe of University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUANAR). The Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development (MoAIWD), Hon. Joseph Mwanamveka officially opened the Conference. The theme of the PAFFA6 Exhibition was adopted from the overall conference theme; African Fish and Fisheries: Diversity, Conservation and Sustainable Management.

Fishing was identified in the National Agricultural Investment Plan (NAIP) as the second most important value chain with strong poverty reduction effects. The NAIP also ranked fishing as the seventh most important value chain in its potential contribution to Agriculture-Food Systems Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth.

To provide information to guide development of the fish subsector, the Ministry of Agriculture, through NAPAS: Malawi and with financial support from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), plans to conduct a fish value chain study. The study will identify bottlenecks and inherent opportunities at each of the value chain nodes with the aim of unlocking the potential of the fisheries and aquaculture subsectors in Malawi. NAPAS: Malawi participated in the conference as a first step to developing the fish value chain study that it has been tasked to conduct. The NAPAS team interviewed 35 stakeholders to identify some of the issues that the value chain study should investigate in carrying out the value chain study. The NAPAS team also disseminated policy documents and policy briefs at the exhibitions.

The 3rd International Mzuzu Trade Fair, October 5–7, 2018

The Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (MCCCI) organized the 3rd Mzuzu International Fair. Mzuzu University Vice Chancellor Professor Fred Msiska officially opened the International Fair. Sixteen exhibitors participated in the fair under the theme; Industrialization: Basis for Trade Competitiveness. The NAPAS exhibition took forth position while the pavilion decoration took second position. More importantly, however, the Project managed to disseminate 54 policy briefs, 7 copies of the National Agriculture Policy document (NAP), 15 copies of the NAP abridged Chichewa version, 8 copies of the National Agriculture Investment Plan (NAIP), and 15 copies of the Contract Farming Strategy.

Malawi Broadcasting Station interviewed the Chief of Party, Dr. Flora Nankhuni on the economic importance of the value chain studies that were disseminated. Listen

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