The Malawi Situation
- the poorest country in the world that is not either involved in, or recovering from, civil war
- one of the most unequal income distributions: the richest 20% of the population consumes 46.3% of goods and services, compared to the poorest 20% that consumes only 6.3% of them.
- 60% live under the poverty line
- 49% are stunted because of long-term mal-nourishment
- GNP per capita is US$210.
- Life expectancy is 39 years old
- HIV/AIDs is affecting up to 25% of the population in urban areas, and 13% in rural areas
- Malawi is divided into 3 key regions
- Blantyre is situated in the South and is the largest city. The capital city, Lilongwe, is in the Central region while Mzuzu is the main city in the North.
- Chichewa and English are joint official national languages.
- population: 11 million people
- 11.2% of adults over 25 years of age have completed primary school
- 58% of the population is literate, while the female literacy rate is 44%women.
Malawi’s economic base is agriculture in which up to 85% of the population are engaged and which generates up to 95% of foreign exchange earnings.
- three quarters of the population go hungry for a quarter of the year.
- Malawi is over-dependent on the very drought sensitive maize crop
- In early 2002, Malawi suffered the worst recorded famine.
- Currently, Malawi is already experiencing an even worse food crisis than early in 2002
- production forecasts predict a further 5% decline in the maize harvest and a deficit of 650,000MT
- 2 million orphans out of a total population
- despite the introduction of free primary education, the net enrolment rate has remained at 78%.
- Infant mortality is at a rate of 104 deaths and under-5 mortality at 189 deaths per 1000 live births.
- more and more children are coming on the streets
- 80% of them have lost one or both parents through AIDS
- numbers of newcomers on the streets went up by 200% between 2001 and 2002