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In the early years of the 21st Century

Description: Description: Malawi

CAUTION:  The following links and accompanying text have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Malawi in the early years of the 21st Century.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated, misleading or even false.   No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspects of poverty are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring the relationship between distribution of labor and per-capita GDP, for example.  Perhaps your paper could focus on life expectancy or infant mortality.  Other factors of interest might be unemployment, literacy, access to basic services, etc.  On the other hand, you might choose to include some of the possible outgrowths of poverty such as Human Trafficking, Street Children, or even Prostitution.  There is a lot to the subject of Poverty.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.


Check out some of the Resources for Teachers attached to this website.

*** Extreme Weather ***

Malawi has recently experienced an intense heatwave, with temperatures soaring nearly 20°C above the seasonal average. Some school buildings in the southern part of the country were evacuated. By Saturday, parts of Malawi saw a maximum temperature of 43°C (109°F), compared to an average of nearly 25°C (77°F) for this time of year. The extreme heat persisted, leading to a prolonged period of hot and uncomfortable weather throughout October.adapted from Microsoft BING Copilot

*** ARCHIVES ***

The World Factbook - Malawi

U.S. Central Intelligence Agency CIA

[accessed 3 January 2020]

World Factbook website has moved to --->

[accessed 6 January 2021]

Landlocked Malawi ranks among the world's least developed countries. The country’s economic performance has historically been constrained by policy inconsistency, macroeconomic instability, poor infrastructure, rampant corruption, high population growth, and poor health and education outcomes that limit labor productivity. The economy is predominately agricultural with about 80% of the population living in rural areas. Agriculture accounts for about one-third of GDP and 80% of export revenues. The performance of the tobacco sector is key to short-term growth as tobacco accounts for more than half of exports, although Malawi is looking to diversify away from tobacco to other cash crops.

GDP - per capita (PPP): $1,200 (2017 est.)

Labor force - by occupation:

agriculture: 76.9%

industry: 4.1%

services: 19% (2013 est.)

Unemployment rate: 20.4% (2013 est.)

Population below poverty line: 50.7% (2010 est.)

Maternal mortality rate: 349 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 39.5 deaths/1,000 live births

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 63.2 years

Drinking water source: improved: total: 88.7% of population

Physicians density: 0.02 physicians/1,000 population (2016)

Sanitation facility access: improved: total: 39.6% of population

Electricity access: electrification - total population: 11% (2016)

The Borgen Project - Malawi

[accessed 16 February 2021]

The Borgen Project works with U.S. leaders to utilize the United States’ platform behind efforts toward improving living conditions for the world’s poor.  It is an innovative, national campaign that is working to make poverty a focus of U.S. foreign policy.  It believes that leaders of the most powerful nation on earth should be doing more to address global poverty. From ending segregation to providing women with the right to vote, nearly every wrong ever righted in history was achieved through advocacy. The Borgen Project addresses the big picture, operating at the political level advancing policies and programs that improve living conditions for those living on less than $1 per day.

~ 3 Countries Supported Through Iceland’s Foreign Aid

~ 5 Innovations In Poverty Eradication In Malawi

~ Preventing Harmful Practices In Malawi

~ How Villagereach Is Improving Healthcare

~ Addressing Healthcare Worker Emigration

~ 10 Facts About Sanitation In Malawi

~ Severe Land Degradation In Malawi

Malawi is on course to miss its targets for 2030 under the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Raphael Mweninguwe, D+C Newsletter, 10 May 2021

[accessed 10 May 2021]

In a televised address earlier this year, however, President Chakwera said those goals – which track goals of the SDGs – are increasingly out of reach. Statistics bear out this pessimistic forecast. For example, SDG 6 aims for universal access to safe and affordable drinking water. However, only about five percent of Malawians use water from protected wells, according to the country’s most recent census.

Similarly, SDG 1 sets a goal of ending extreme poverty by 2030. Yet 51 % of the population is poor and 20 % extremely poor, according to the National Statistics Office.

According to President Chakwera, the main reason for slow progress is corruption. He accused the previous administration of stealing 1.3 trillion Malawian Kwacha (€ 1.4 billion).

Government intensifies campaign against child labour

UN Integrated Regional Information Networks IRIN, Blantyre, 30 November 2007

[accessed 3 January 2021]

The New Humanitarian, Blantyre, 30 November 2007

[accessed 3 January 2021]

POVERTY - Billy Banda, executive director of Malawi Watch, a non-governmental organisation advocating human rights and good economic governance, said it was difficult to rely on legislation to combat trafficking without tackling poverty, the root cause of child exploitation, in a country where more than 70 percent of the 12 million population live on US$2 a day or less.

While recognising the efforts by government and its development partners to combat human trafficking and child labour, Banda said, "Increasing the number of child protection officers without dealing with what drives thousands of our children into exploitative labour will not solve the problem. These children are compelled to work in estates because of poverty and, to a large extent, because they either have one or no parent at all."

The World Bank in Malawi

[accessed 21 April 2021]

The World Bank aims to support Malawi's efforts toward more diversified, competitive, shock-resilient socio-economic growth.

Looking back a few years …

Advameg, Inc., Encyclopedia of the Nations

[accessed 3 January 2020]

Malawi's is an agricultural economy which, in recent years, has been troubled by drought and financial instability. It is dependent for most of its income on the export sales of tobacco (60%), and tea and sugar (20%). Other agricultural products include peanuts, coffee, and wood products.

Manufacturing is small-scale, directed mainly to the processing of export crops. In 2000, the agricultural sector employed an estimated 86% of Malawi's population and accounted for about 40% of GDP. Over 90% of the population lives in rural areas. The sector experienced severe droughts in 1979–81, 1992, 1994, and 2001–02. Periods of flooding also plague Malawi, as happened in 2003. Production of maize, the main food staple, during the 2001/02 growing season was 1.6 million metric tons, approximately 600,000 short of estimated domestic demand.

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