Malawi struggling to find forex for fuel

MERA spokesperson Fitina Khonje speaking in Zomba in October 2023

The Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (MERA) says Malawi is still struggling to find forex for fuel procurement and this is the reason the fuel crisis has persisted in the country.

MERA Public Relations Officer, Fitina Khonje, said this in Zomba during an interface meeting with Zomba Press Club.

She said companies that were authorized to import fuel into the country are struggling to find forex, adding that this has affected fuel importation and fuel availability in most of the fuel pumps.

Khonje said MERA organised the interface meeting with the press club to raise awareness of MERA’s mandate and how the regulator works so that the media should in turn disseminate information to the general public on the fuel situation in the country amidst scarcity of forex.

She said MERA was mandated to regulate and monitor fuel, electricity and gas prices.

“MERA doesn’t import fuel. We only issue licences for operation to Petroleum Importers Limited (PIL) and National Oil Company of Malawi (NOCMA) to allow them import fuel such that our mandate is to regulate fuel prices,” Khonje added

Zomba Press Club President, Titus Linzie, hailed MERA for orienting the media in Zomba on the authority’s mandate and operations.

He said the media in Zomba will continue writing stories that should inform the public on MERA mandate as energy regulator and the role of PIL and NOCMA as fuel importers.

“As media we’ve the obligation to inform the public on roles and responsibilities of each player in the energy and fuel industry apart from informing the nation on the current fuel situation and on the forex, scarcity” said Linzie.

MERA and Zomba Press Club interface meeting came at a time when most parts of Malawi are experiencing low fuel supply forcing motorists to spend several hours at service stations where the commodity is available.