AFIDEP at the 3rd High Level Forum on Development Effectiveness in Malawi
18 September 2017
Author: Diana Warira
A farmer feeds fish in Chiunda village, Zomba, Malawi. The goal of Malawi's MDGS III is to build a productive, competitive and resilient nation. Photo: Stevie Mann/WorldFish

On 20 September 2017, the Malawi Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development will host the 3rd High Level Forum on Development Effectiveness in Lilongwe, Malawi. The Forum, which brings together government, development partners, civil society, academia, and the private sector, shall be held at the Bingu International Conference Centre. The forum’s theme is Towards an Inclusive and Accelerated Implementation of the Third Malawi Growth and Development Strategy, and AFIDEP’s Executive Director, Dr. Eliya Zulu shall be moderating the discussions.

 The Forum will focus on moving the National Development AgendaImplementation of the Third Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS III) forward. The ultimate goal of the MDGS III is to build a productive, competitive and resilient nation. In order to drive towards this goal, the Forum’s agenda is to spur dialogue on funding and opportunities available to support implementation of MGDS III; linking the National Resilience Strategy to MGDS III; unleashing the potential of decentralisation in support of MGDS III implementation; and managing population growth for full realisation of MGDS III aspirations as follows:

It is expected that the Forum will draw consensus, provide guidance and accelerate action on effective implementation of the MGDS III focusing on: adaption to challenges of more diverse, extensive and complex development finance architecture; implementation arrangements for building national resilience and how this could form part of MGDS III implementation; linking District Development Plans to MGDS III and building necessary capacity for effective decentralisation; strategies on how to deal better with issues of population and development in the medium- term; in line with Agenda 2030, and the long-term; in line with Africa’s Agenda 2063.

Of key interest is how MDGS III will be financed. As agreed upon by government in consultation with key stakeholders, MDGS III will be largely be financed through domestic revenues; external grants; and borrowing (both internally and externally). Additionally, Public-Private Partnerships for infrastructure programmes shall be encouraged. In view of this, the Malawi Government is carrying out a Development Finance Assessment (DFA) in order to capture a wide range of resource and opportunities available to finance MGDS III. It is expected that the DFA will provide an analysis on the changing trends in development finance. It will also recommend how institutions and systems should be adjusted for different sources of development finance to be managed within a coherent framework, which better supports the achievement of national priorities and results. Development stakeholders at the Forum with therefore discuss some of innovative ways of financing for development. Specifically, members will reflect on: how the Government can explore and take advantage of new sources of financing; existing innovative ways of financing the MGDS III; what measures all partners commit themselves to, for Malawi to build sufficient capacity for domestic resource mobilisation and increase absorption of Overseas Development Assistance (ODA); how Malawi can facilitate financing of priority sectors and flagship projects identified in MGDS III; and, how all actors work in their own capacities, and together, to achieve MGDS III aspirations.

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