Malawi’s economy is predominantly agriculture-based with a focus on maize, tobacco, tea, sugar and cotton, but significant commercial opportunities exist in other sectors, such as telecommunications, power and mining. As a global leader in commodity-related financial services, Standard Bank is well-positioned to realise significant opportunities for our clients in this market. Our Malawian team combines their in-depth understanding of local market conditions and drivers with Standard Bank’s experience in emerging markets globally to develop solutions that create real value for our clients.
Malawi at a glance

Although Malawi’s economy has performed well over the last few years, with GDP growth averaging above levels for Sub-Saharan Africa, challenges still remain. The country has experienced reduced donor inflows, foreign exchange difficulties and shortages of essential commodities.

The country is taking steps to address its challenges – Malawi floated its exchange rate in 2012 and has agreed to an economic recovery plan by 2020.

Quick view

  • Population: 16 100 000
  • Nominal GDP: USD5.4 billion
  • Real GDP growth: 4.9%
  • CPI: 21.4%

* 2015 forecast

Sector expertise in Malawi

Malawi is seeing growth in its agriculture, and related wholesale and retail trade sectors. However, the country remains reliant on large import volumes, and benefits from Standard Bank’s experience and network to support this trade.

Mining is currently the fastest growing sector in the country, and there is growth in financial services, tourism and infrastructure with a focus on public infrastructure in the areas of education, healthcare and transport. However, with ongoing shortfalls in energy, greater investment is required in this area. Malawi also has low penetration rates in the telecommunications sector, providing scope for further growth.

A greater focus is being placed on adding value to commodities, specifically in mining and agriculture.

Read more about Standard Bank Group’s sector specialism.

Products and services in Malawi

Our Corporate and Investment Banking teams provide services to local businesses, international organisations and government. We have a range of competitive products to help our clients protect revenue in the face of fluctuating currencies and interest rate risk. We also provide regular research and insight into markets and opportunities, ensuring our clients have the information to position their business accordingly.

Where clients are experiencing difficulties, we can help them restructure their balance sheets to manage their business more effectively. We also provide support to small and medium-sized enterprises.

We are an active participant in the country, supporting and advising on public private partnerships for our government and business clients. We remain a trusted financial services partner to government and the donor community, as well as development finance institutions including the World Bank.

We have evolved to be the only bank in the country with a full investment banking capability, and regional support from teams in Johannesburg and London.

We provide structured and debt lending through debt capital markets, and advisory services in equity capital markets and commercial paper. Standard Bank Malawi controls between 35 to 40% of the foreign exchange market. We supply derivatives structuring and spot trading, and are developing and extending our money markets capability.

We have extensive experience in structured trade and commodity finance with the largest volumes in tobacco. Our trade finance and cash management capabilities are very strong, and we are the only bank offering custody solutions and unit trusts.

As a trusted multinational corporation, our clients rely on our stability, experience and expertise.

Read more about corporate and investment banking solutions for your business.


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Standard Bank Malawi Limited

Africa Unity Avenue
City Centre

 +265 1 872 099


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