Although the majority of Malawi’s economy depends on agriculture, there are limited crops that are currently suitable for export to neighbouring countries due to quality control issues, poor transportation linkages, uncoordinated farmers with relatively low productivity levels and access to markets, and policy disincentives.
This analysis has focused on two of the primary barriers preventing the export of regionally demanded crops: The long-standing export ban on maize; and Poor quality control standards and regulations for groundnuts.
Malawi’s education system is facing many challenges. Despite a consistently high proportion of the government’s budget being
allocated to education, youth in Malawi are failing to progress to secondary school in large numbers and consistently do poorly
compared to other similar countries assessed on literacy and math skills. This report has proposed several intervention options that
can mitigate some of the barriers to high-quality primary education that currently exist in Malawi. This includes five interventions:
classroom construction, reduced class sizes, in-service teacher training, school feeding, and technology-assisted learning.
Agricultural commercialization in Malawi is broadly constrained by poor market systems and unorganized farmers. Further still, there are a multitude of other challenges constraining the development of formal agricultural markets in Malawi. The COVID-19 pandemic has also introduced additional challenges to the agriculture sector in Malawi.
The proposed intervention for this analysis is the reform of the two commodity exchanges. This was selected because it has the potential to improve policy and market coordination at a national level, as well as provide a practical avenue for farmer training, storage, and credit systems.
The main takeaway from this cost-benefit analysis is that policy makers need to pay very close attention to costs of irrigation technologies and the choice of commodities promoted. Tomato, paprika and to a lesser extent cassava appear to fare well under irrigation, with gross margins large enough to cover the cost of irrigation investments studied in this report. The high returns to tomato in Malawi have been documented elsewhere in the literature, so it seems like this finding is relatively robust (Fandika, Kadyampakeni and Zingore, 2012; Kadyampakeni et al., 2015). Different irrigation technologies have different costs and cost profiles. Our findings show, unsurprisingly, that relatively inexpensive gravity irrigation generates larger BCRs than more expensive solar.
Despite severe wealth and resource constraints, Malawi has made significant progress in increasing access to contraception and reducing fertility rates between 1990 and 2015. In this report, we have assessed the costs and benefits of providing women with postpartum counselling services and free access to contraceptives and transportation. Our analysis shows that implementing this program for two years passes a benefit-cost test while implementing the program for ten years will have a BCR of around 37.2 if it succeeds in reducing the population.
Undernutrition and stunting present a number of challenges for children in Malawi. The long-lasting harmful consequences include diminished mental ability and learning capacity, poor school performance in childhood, reduced earnings and increased risks related to diabetes, hypertension, and obesity. Using cost-benefit analysis to determine which interventions provide the strongest impact for additional funds, this report highlights interventions that show promise and represent good uses of funds to tackle the challenge of undernutrition in Malawi.
This report analyses three interventions that provide HIV and AIDS services to FSWs in Malawi. Malawi has made many notable accomplishments in addressing the burden of HIV and AIDS. While overall HIV incidence has declined considerably, now estimated at 2.28 overall per 1000 population, new infections are not generalized and appear to be concentrated around youth and women (AIDSinfo/UNAIDS).
In this report, we have assessed the costs and benefits of delivering improved emergency obstetric and newborn care (EmONC) and nutritional supplements. Our analysis shows that many of these interventions have benefit-cost ratios (BCRs) of greater than 15 and could be very good uses of resources to improve maternal and neonatal health in Malawi.
This report summarises results of a study carried out to assess the potential Demographic Dividend that Angola can earn under different policy scenarios and to determine the policy actions that the country can invest in to optimise its chances of harnessing the Demographic Dividend.
The demographic dividend refers to the temporary economic benefit that a country can earn from a significant increase in the ratio of working-age adults relative to young dependents that is created by rapid decline in birth rates. The full potential of the demographic dividend can be realised if the fertility declines and change in the age structure is accompanied by sustained investments in education and skills development, health, job creation and good governance.
The East African Regional Analysis of Youth Demographics study examined youth population dynamics, policies and other economic and natural challenges in Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda and the impact they can have on the socioeconomic transformation of a country. The compilation and production of this research uptake report is a culmination of various research communication and engagement forums attended by a cross-section of stakeholders in the field of development from the East African Community (EAC) and beyond.
The primary objective of this study was to assess Namibia’s prospects for harnessing the demographic dividend and to identify priority options for maximising the dividend. Demographic change has implications for the realisation of these ambitions. This report, therefore, outlines the key policy recommendations on how Namibia can harness the potential of her youthful population to achieve socio-economic development.
The Evidence-Informed Policy-Making (EIPM) field seeks to inculcate a culture of evidence use in decision-making to ensure the right investments are made towards development policies and practice. This report explores the EIPM landscape with the aim of understanding the barriers of evidence use in policy-making and the ways of measuring EIPM impact.