President Mutharika thanked the UK Government and said, “This is a clear testimony of the cordial bilateral relations that exist between Malawi and Scotland. Malawi and Scotland share a 157-years long history of fraternal relations. Indeed, Scotland is the oldest good friend for Malawi from Europe, and this is testified and enjoyed by the people of the two brotherly countries. I therefore wish to reaffirm my government’s commitment for the continued cooperation between Malawi and Scotland in industrial and technological development, manufacturing, energy and mitigation against the impact of climate change, among other areas.”

The UK has been at the forefront of the response to Malawi’s international appeal for emergency aid following widespread droughts and flooding due to El Nino weather effects. Today’s announcement brings the UK’s humanitarian support in Malawi since October 2015 to £14.5m. In total, the UK’s £14.5m support will ensure:

  • The World Food Programme (WFP) can deliver emergency food packages including basic rations of maize and nutrient-rich cereals for over 800,000 people;
  • UNICEF can undertake mass screening of up to 800,000 children to identify urgent nutritional support needs;
  • A Save the Children-led consortium can provide small cash transfers to over 450,000 people to buy basic food supplies for their families at food markets, helping stimulate local maize and other food markets.
  • WFP and UNICEF can provide specialist supplies for up to 140,000 people suffering from acute malnutrition, including children under five, pregnant women and people who are HIV-positive or suffering from tuberculosis;
  • Vital protection support to vulnerable people, including women and girls, in displacement and refugee camps through the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
  • Support to improve livelihoods for some of the most vulnerable households, including vaccinations for over 150,000 livestock through the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization.

Speaking after having an audience with Professor Peter Mutharika, the Scottish Secretary David Mundell, who is on a three-day visit to Malawi, said:

“I was pleased to be able to relay to President Mutharika this additional UK support. This assistance is in parallel to discussions with the government and other donors on how collectively we can urgently introduce new ways of working and reforms that will help break the yearly cycle of food insecurity in Malawi

“Scotland can be proud of our long standing links with Malawi and we can be proud of the outstanding work civil servants from DFID’s dual headquarters in East Kilbride are leading on worldwide.

“My visit to Malawi this week has reaffirmed how much people here value the great bond which exists between our two nations. This new UK funding will help strengthen this bond and provide life-saving support to hundreds of thousands of Malawians.

Echoing Mundell’s remarks, The UK Government’s International Development Minister Nick Hurd said:

“Across Africa widespread drought means millions of people are going without food while thousands more have lost their home in severe flooding. Support for people affected by El Nino is important to Africa but is also in the UK’s national interest. In places like Malawi the UK has been at the forefront of preventing and preparing for the effects of El Niño in the world’s poorest places, by storing medicine and food supplies so they can quickly be delivered to those in need, and helping people to earn a living so they can provide for their families."