Malawi is a small landlocked African country between Tanzania, Zambia and Mozambique.
The economy in Malawi is highly driven by the agricultural sector, which employs about 80 per cent of the total workforce. Malnutrition remains widespread with 47 per cent of children under the age of five having stunted growth. Some 25 per cent of women aged 40-49 are also overweight, and there are high levels of micronutrient deficiencies in both adults and children.
Although agriculture is the main area of employment for the majority of Malawi’s population, especially women and young people, the sector is constrained by various challenges. These include climate change, a population boom and markets to sell their produce.
Over the last few years, Malawi has faced economic challenges with high inflation and currency devaluation. This has affected the lives of the poorest, with 2.8 million people lacking sufficient access to food. These problems were partly a result of the El Niño weather phenomenon which can bring erratic rains, prolonged dry spells and floods.
Thankfully the 2017 harvest was very good and has significantly eased the food shortages in the country. Food inflation has therefore dropped to around 9.3 per cent, though non-food inflation remains high at more than 12 per cent. However, climate change and adverse weather conditions remain a threat.