Malawi suffers from poverty with half of its population earning less than $1.25 a day, and high undernutrition rates resulting in stunting of 47 percent of children under the age of five. Although the country has experienced strong per capita GDP growth since 2005, these challenges remain. Agriculture is the main source of income for most of its people; therefore, agriculture is the key to ensuring food security and poverty reduction in Malawi.
“The presence of IFPRI in Malawi has helped in several other areas; for example, IFPRI has helped place poverty, and food and nutrition security at the top of the agenda.”
- Allan Chiyembekeza, Minister of Agriculture of Malawi
In 2010, IFPRI established the Malawi Strategy Support Program, with funding from the United States Agency for International Development, to work directly with the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development and the Department of Agricultural Planning Services of Malawi in promoting relevant in-country research, policy analysis, and capacity building. As part of this program, IFPRI provided research and technical assistance to the Agricultural Sector-wide Approach, which focused on agricultural growth acceleration through efficient resource allocation and development strategy, consistent with the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) agenda. Additional research areas include climate change adaptation, farm input subsidy analysis, biotechnology evaluation, and land governance monitoring and implementation.
On November 18, 2015, Allan Chiyembekeza spoke about Malawi’s engagements with IFPRI that helped advance the country’s agricultural development during IFPRI's 40th Anniversary.