Rural roads and rural development in Malawi



Agriculture is one of the most significant sectors of the Republic of Malawi’s economy. It employs about 80% of the total workforce, accounts for 39 % of the Gross Domestic Product and contributes significantly to national and household food security. A large amount of the population in Malawi is based in rural areas. To improve their livelihood, the EU-funded Rural Roads Improvement Program, implemented by NTU from 2018 to 2021, aims at supporting rural development. The overall objective of the project is to contribute to the Government of the Republic of Malawi’s goal of poverty reduction through sustainable agriculture and infrastructure development by improving access to economic and social resources by the rural population, in particular smallholder farmers, facilitated by improved, rehabilitated and sustainably maintained rural roads.

To support in reaching this overall objective, NTU is providing Malawi, and in particular the Ministry of Transport and Public Works and Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, with technical assistance to support the establishment of organisational, financial and technical arrangements that create sustainable conditions for roads management at district level.

How we did it

As part of the many activities already implemented by NTU within this project, different training workshops were organized including two of them on Procurement of road works and services. This training workshops aimed at providing the participants with a practical understanding of procurement for the successful execution of their construction contract. The workshops were attended by Directors of Public Works, Directors of Public Planning and Supervisors of Works and Procurement Officers and key personnel of various construction districts.

NTU’s expert team organized the training workshops around presentations, which provided participants with a general understanding on how to manage procurement. Different aspects of the procurement were targeted:

  • Introduction to procurement;
  • Public procurement law;
  • Public procurement planning;
  • Ethics procurement;
  • Procurement of works and services (Procurement cycle); and
  • National Constriction Industry Council

NTU also provided the participants with real-life case studies which stimulated debate and thereafter defined the solution to the given case regarding applicable procurement standards and appropriate legislation.


Thanks to these two workshops, the participants benefitted from skills and knowledge enhancement and were able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the fundamentals of procurement
  • Demonstrate an understand of the procurement law
  • Carry-out
  • public procurement using different methods
  • Carry-out bid evaluation
  • Procure works and services
  • Understand the roles and responsibilities of various players in the procurement cycle
  • Understand other regulatory frameworks in the construction industry

The knowledge imparted onto the participants will go a long way in enhancing their capacity and have a direct and indirect positive impact on the construction industry, respectively; through effective and efficient service delivery.