Inequality Worse than Poverty in Malawi - Analyst

Masanjala (File Photo) Masanjala (File Photo)

A professor in economics says only when Malawi addresses her glaring inequality crisis will efforts to reduce poverty yield results.

Professor Winford Masanjala of Chancellor College says current and previous governments have ignored the crisis.

He said since independence, only less than 10 percent of the country’s population is engaged in meaningful activities that contribute to the economy.

“It is not surprising that our poverty alleviation efforts are not yielding fruits because we must address inequality first,” he said.

Professor Masanjala, a former Principal Secretary in government, made a presentation on inequality in Malawi at this year’s annual conference of the Economics Association of Malawi (ECAMA) that closed Friday in Mangochi.

The economist further observed that Malawi will need to create no less than 250 000 jobs each year to close the inequality gap.

He added, “While poverty is a rural phenomenon, inequality is an urban phenomenon.”

Over 80 percent of people in Malawi live in rural areas, with agriculture as their main source of income.

60-70 percent of Malawi’s 17 million population lives below the poverty line earning a dollar per day.

This year’s ECAMA conference was held under the theme “Population Growth- Challenges and Opportunities for Economic Development in Malawi”.

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