This came as a shock to me, too. I
had no idea what what happening with them. Kristof and I were in there a
few times recently and commenting on how nice everyone is there and how
efficiently they run. I don't know how it keeps happening!
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Monday, September 09, 2002 11:49
Subject: [ujeni] Economic fallout
I thought David Whitehead cloth was one of the shiny lights
of quality that Malawi produced with good export potential, even
here. Drat!!! How does this keep
Malawi to shut
Malawi has said it will shut down the
largest textile factory, putting more than
people out of work, after plans for
The government has decided to
subsidising the factory because of
financial losses, the Commerce and
Minister Peter Kaleso said.
Only last month Mr Kaleso said that
government was looking for a strategic
for the state-owned David Whitehead
Sons (DWS) factory and he was predicting
The closure comes even though Malawi
seen textile exports surge since it signed
African Growth and Opportunity Act
treaty with the US in September 2001.
In the last year the industry's yearly
rate was reported to be 120%.
DWS is the main source of cotton yarn,
and African prints exported from
according to the local Confederation
Chambers of Commerce and Industry.
The company hit financial difficulties in
early 1990s when the government ended
monopoly status - in-line with
Monetary Fund and World Bank policies -
liberalised the textile market.
The resulting imports of second-hand
from the Far East virtually destroyed
production in Malawi, as in many other
DWS was one of the companies that
Malawi's privatisation programme but like
others has now been shut down after failing
find a buyer.
In a letter of intent to secure
reduction funding, Malawi promised to
DWS in July 2002.
DWS is 51% owned by the Malawi
and 49% by the state owned
Investments Holding Company.
The government has set aside about
kwacha ($2m; *1.3m) to compensate
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