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Doing Business in Malawi

Doing Business In Malawi:  A Country Commercial Guide for U.S. Companies

2013 Investment Climate Statement

Country Commercial Guide: This Country Commercial Guide (CCG) presents a comprehensive look at Malawi's commercial environment, using economic, political, and market analysis.  The CCGs were established by recommendation of the Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee (TPCC), a multi-agency task force, to consolidate various reporting documents prepared for the U.S. business community.  The Malawi  Commercial Guides are prepared annually by the Economic and commercial section of the U.S. Embassy through the combined efforts of several U.S. Government agencies.

Malawi Investment Incentive PDF 315 KB 

Malawi Investment Portfolio PDF 586.09KB

Fibre Optic Cable Project

Partner Sought for Fibre Optic Cable Project in Malawi

The government of Malawi is seeking credible companies to provide international broadband in the country. The project, which will be under a public private partnership, involves the installation and operation of a fibre optic cable from Lilongwe to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, and onward transit over submarine fibre optic cable.

The government plans to utilise a portion of the loan it acquired from the World Bank's International Development Association (IDA) for the Malawi Regional Communication Infrastructure Program, to fund the broadband project.

The government is now inviting pre-qualifying bids from companies. The pre-qualification process will be conducted according to the World Bank's guidelines for procurements under IBRD loans and IDA credits, and is open to all bidders from eligible source countries, as defined in the guidelines.

Only applicants who participate in the pre-qualification process, and whom will be deemed qualified, will be requested to bid when the government issues the tender in August, 2012.
Applications for pre-qualification will close on 16 July 2012

Scope of the assignment
The government as a party to the PPP agreement intends to use its purchasing power to lower the demand risk of the project and therefore the cost of international broadband connectivity. It also seeks to attract new private sector investment in Malawi's fibre optic telecommunication backbone infrastructure, with the objectives of diversifying international routes and reducing international connectivity prices through increased competition.

The winning bidder will be required to offer a specified menu of international telecommunication services at the virtual landing point to be established in Lilongwe. The designated route for the services is from Lilongwe to the Tanzania Border in Karonga, a distance of about 670km. Several drop off points (less than 10) in the Malawi leg of the network will be required.

The winning bidder will be mandated to supply services to both the government and all requesting telecommunication operators and commercial subscribers in Malawi on a non-discriminatory basis.
In addition, the Electricity Supply Commission of Malawi ("ESCOM") will offer the winning bidder the option, but not the obligation, to access and use its electricity transmission facilities for the installation and operation of a telecommunication network from Lilongwe to a point near the prescribed interconnection point at the Tanzania border, on agreed terms and conditions between the two parties.

The winning bidder, in order to perform its obligations to provide telecommunication services to Malawi, and as a significant private sector component of the public-private partnership, will have to construct, install, maintain and operate a Virtual Landing Point (VLP) and the fibre optic cable telecommunication system between the VLP in Lilongwe, Malawi and an interconnection point at the Malawi-Tanzania border with corresponding fibre optic telecommunication facilities in Tanzania.

Onward terrestrial and submarine transit (to recognized Tier 1 suppliers at international interconnection points such as London and Frankfurt) must also be over fibre optic cable, but may be provided by the winning bidder either on a re-seller or facilities-based operator basis. The contract price, for services offered to government, will be paid by the government in instalments upon commencement of the delivery of service against specific performance standards, all as specified in the IFB and contract.

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