Development of Industrial Hemp regulations that will enable Malawi to formally join the growing nations is set to start this December as it awaits Cabinet approval, the Malawi Investment and Trade Centre has said.
Speaking to the Malawi UK Business Group reception in London, Director of Investment Promotion, Joshua Nthankomwa, said Malawi is set to have Industrial Hemp and Medicinal Cannabis programmes rolled out at different levels.
"The Special Crops Act is already in place, what we need now are regulations to govern the growing with Industrial Hemp licensing to start as soon as Government gives necessary approvals to regulations.
"There will be controls on who and how can one grow Industrial Hemp, basically through green houses," said Nthakomwa, who presented the two as existing investment opportunities in Malawi.
Nthakomwa said for the two sectors, controls will extend to include local processing of the plants as no raw hemp or cannabis will be exported to ensure that Malawi gains maximum benefits from the growing of the crop.
"We have registered huge interests from companies in Canada, Israel and many other places. We look forward to many more investors coming, not only in this sector, but many other sectors that Government has created environment for one to grow their business," he said.
InveGrow, a private company has been conducting trials on Industrial Hemp at Chitedze Research Station and the results were submitted pending further approval and proper framework for licenses to be issued.
Internet search indicates an acre with 25000 plants can fetch up to US$60,000 in the USA in states where hemp has been legalised, indicating massive potential for a high yield crop that would surpass most of current commercial crops and minerals.