YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS EQUIPPED ON BUSINESS REGULATIONS
ACADES hosted a Business Regulatory Framework Workshop on Wednesday 4th September 2019. The event took place at ACADES Offices in area 47, sector 3. The workshop was organized to bring together entrepreneurs and different regulatory bodies in Malawi to explain on the requirements and roles that they play which the entrepreneurs and start-up can take into consideration.
The regulatory bodies included the Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA), Malawi Bureau of Standard (MBS), Department of Registration, Malawi Confederation Chambers of Commerce and Industry (MCCCI), National Bank, First Capital Bank and a Legal Firm. The First Capital Bank was represented by Mr. Gomezgani Kakhuta who is the Agribusiness Manager. In his presentation, the Agribusiness Manager emphasized on the importance of seeking guidance from the bank among entrepreneurship. Mr. Kakhuta said First Capital Bank does offer loans, asset and finance services among other things. He further said that the bank helps in the buying and selling of forex and provision of a credit letter for international trade transaction use. National Bank also equipped the audience with entrepreneurship skills through the explanation of loan process and the interest, accounts that entrepreneurship groups can open as well as the collaterals. The presenter also hinted on the plans of launching a Development Bank which will be supporting Small and Medium Enterprises.
The Malawi Revenue Authority also cleared the myth that the body is there to milk out Businesses but rather implement the raw and provide quality services. The representatives highlighted on the taxes, exemptions and incentives that they currently offer. They emphasized on the advantages of registering a business as it is for free. Malawi Confederation Chambers of Commerce and Industry was another notable presenter at the event. The Association said that they are working with each and every business to help them grow. MCCCI further urged the audience to join them through membership because they play a vital role in representing business entities in international trade fairs as well as relaying information to its members on the available international markets.
The Department of Registration also gave a powerful presentation to the audience. The presenter underlined that they are implementers of the constitution of Malawi and that is where their mandate is from. She further said that it is an offence to operate a business without registration because it is against the constitution of Malawi. The presenter further said that they also do registration of movable properties which is known as Personal Property Security Registry (PPSR) which helps to act as collateral if one wants to get a loan.
The Legal firm was represented by Counsel Hassan Issah. He encouraged the audience to do partnerships in business especially in partnerships registration because they assist in drafting the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). However, the partnership must be based on written agreements with partners, debtors and creditors other than oral agreements. The presenter also tackled on some of the partnership Laws in Malawi and how they can be applied.
The final presentation was done by the Malawi Bureau of Standard. The body mentioned the 3 popular kinds of standards which they have. These are Labelling of pre-packed foods also known as the General standard, the Food and food processing units known as the Code of hygienic conditions and the Quality Management Systems also known as the Requirements. The presenter also encouraged the audience to buy standards that are related to their products. The standards are found especially in their main library in Blantyre but can also be found in the other offices. The MBS advised the audience not to start operating a business until they are certified/pre-certified. Failing to comply to the rules has serious consequences which includes fine and imprisonment.
ACADES through the Programs Manager Ms. Madalitso Chipekwe briefed the audience on the projects of ACADES. She also thanked the regulatory bodies that came to the event to do presentations. She stressed on the importance of the event to the young entrepreneurs and those with start-ups.
ACADES has been conducting trainings for the Green Enterprise Innovation Centre which aims at supporting young Agripreneurs with different ideas. The Centre continues to provide space to the young Entrepreneurs as well as trainings. The Business Regulatory Framework Workshop was one of the notable workshop that the Youth Network has been conducting.