Minimum wage earners are struggling to provide for their families following a decline in income due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Centre for Social Concern (CfSC) has said.

CfSC programme officer for economic governance Bernard Mphepo said that with urban households requiring K100 000 a month for food, a 12 percent decline in income means more problems for minimum wage earners.

The minimum wage is pegged at K35 000 monthly.

He said aside from the rising cost of living in urban areas hovering over K194 000 a month for a family of six, a decline in fuel prices did impact consumers.

Up to the first half of this year, Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority revised fuel prices downwards three times before maintaining them at K690.50 per litre for petrol, K664.80 per litre for diesel and K441 per litre for paraffin.

The International Food Policy Research Institute (Ifpri), on the other hand, has found that Covid-19 social distancing measures effected in April, have reduced household incomes by an average of 11.4 percent, with the urban household losing an estimated 12.8 percent while the rural household losses stand at 10.2 percent.

Consumer rights activist John Kapito, who is also Consumers Association of Malawi executive director, observed that the ongoing retrenchments and work-from-home programme have had a huge impact on individual incomes following reduced economic activity.

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