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Escaping poverty: new impetus for rural areas

Map of Malawi

Malawi is a small country with an area only slightly larger than that of Iceland. However, with 192 people per square kilometre, the small nation of Malawi is one of the most densely populated countries in southeast Africa. It has 21.2 million inhabitants, more than a third cannot read or write. Land is in short supply, and pressure upon it is increased due to the country’s rapid population growth. Droughts and unevenly distributed rainfall compound the precarious food situation in the country on a regular basis. The result: some of the population is going hungry. Seven of ten people currently live below the poverty line of USD 1.90 per day. Yet agriculture is the most important livelihood for most people in Malawi. The most important product – apart from tea and sugar – is tobacco. It generates one third of export earnings.

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