Space Program of Malawi

------The Malawi Space Agency------

Level = 0                                         Development: Very Low


Country Overview

What has been going on in Malawi?



Space Agency and its Activity

What kind of space power do they have?



Weapons and Power Projection

Does Malawi have space weapons?



Timeline and the Future

What are they planning over there?

Population: 13,000,000 / Language: English / GDP: $600 / Cities: Blantyre

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For three decades Malawi's destiny was tied to the whims of its totalitarian president-for-life, Kamuzu Banda, who enjoyed being surrounded by dancing women and who encouraged people to betray relatives who criticised his rule.

In the mid-1990s he buckled under popular pressure to hold elections, and lost - finally giving Malawians a taste for multi-party democracy.

His successor, Bakili Muluzi, removed many of the repressions of the Banda years, but the leadership was accused of corruption. Social problems persist, including poverty and the high rate of HIV-Aids infection.

Most Malawians rely on subsistence farming, but the food supply situation is precarious and the country is prone to natural disasters of both extremes - from drought to heavy rainfalls - putting it in constant need of thousands of tonnes of food aid every year.

Malawi has been urged by world financial bodies to free up its economy. Since the mid-1990s it has privatised many loss-making state-run corporations. Its single major natural resource, agricultural land, is under severe pressure from rapid population growth.

Tens of thousands of Malawians die of Aids every year. After years of silence, the authorities spoke out about the crisis. A programme to tackle HIV-Aids was launched in 2004, with President Muluzi revealing that his brother had died from the disease.

Malawi boasts a variety of landscapes, from wetlands and lakes to mountains and forests. National parks and game reserves beckon visitors.

Politics: Turbulent politics is said to have hampered governance. President Mutharika has taken a tough anti-corruption stance and quit his party. Vice-president Chilumpha faces treason charges

Economy: More than half the population lives below the poverty line. Moves are under way to exploit uranium reserves to boost meagre export earnings

International: Malawi is one of only six African countries to maintain diplomatic ties with Taiwan rather than China

  • Full name: The Republic of Malawi
  • Population: 12.6 million (UN, 2005)
  • Capital: Lilongwe
  • Area: 118,484 sq km (45,747 sq miles)
  • Major languages: English, Chichewa (both official)
  • Major religions: Christianity, Islam
  • Life expectancy: 40 years (men), 40 years (women) (UN)
  • Monetary unit: 1 Malawi kwacha (MK) = 100 tambala
  • Main exports: Tobacco, tea, sugar, cotton
  • GNI per capita: US $160 (World Bank, 2006)
  • Internet domain: .mw
  • International dialling code: +265

President : Bingu wa Mutharika

Bingu wa Mutharika, the candidate of the ruling United Democratic Front (UDF), was sworn in on 24 May 2004 after winning presidential elections.

Less than a year later he resigned from the UDF, accusing the party and his predecessor Bakili Muluzi of opposing his high-profile anti-corruption campaign. He formed a new grouping, the Democratic Progressive Party.


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Malawi's Space Infrastructure

 Malawi is one of the world's poorest countries, and its space program is not suprisingly, nonexistent. Not only does it not have an agency, but also no infrastructure in which one would arise. The University of Malawi has no space related educational architecture, lacking astrophysics, astronautics, aeronautics and natural sciences, favoring instead a focus on medicine. The government has no ministry devoted to science of this type.

 Malawi has no history of being part of any organization dealing with space, nor has any launch capability.

Malawi lacks the industrial base, the educational base and the political foundation for a process like this to occur within it. It has no functioning university with an astrophysics or astronautics program, and nonexistant industry.

 Malawi operates no satellites and, not having an orbital presence, has no space power.

The government of Malawi in Lilongwe has no plans for attempting to further any ambition in space development or research.

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Timeline of Events in Malawi

...From the Past to the Future


 1st century AD - Bantu-speaking tribes invade the region inhabited by Twa and Fulani tribes.

Hastings Banda ruled with dictatorial powers for three decades

13-15th centuries - Further migrations of Bantu-speaking people to the area. New settlers work with iron and dominate earlier inhabitants who are considered to be "stone-age".

1480 - Bantu tribes unite several smaller political states to form the Maravi Confederacy which at its height includes large parts of present-day Zambia and Mozambique plus the modern state of Malawi.

17th century - Portuguese explorers arrive from the east coast of present-day Mozambique.

1790-1860 - Slave trade increases dramatically.

1850 - Scottish missionary David Livingstone's exploration of the region paves the way for missionaries, European adventurers, traders.

1878 - Livingstonia Central African Mission Company from Scotland begins work to develop a river route into Central Africa to enable trade.

1891 - Britain establishes the Nyasaland and District Protectorate.

1893 - Name is changed to the British Central African Protectorate. White European settlers are offered land for coffee plantations at very low prices. Tax incentives force Africans to work on these plantations for several months a year, often in difficult conditions.

1907 - British Central African Protectorate becomes Nyasaland.

1915 - Reverend John Chilembwe leads a revolt against British rule, killing the white managers of a particularly brutal estate and displaying the head of one outside his church. He is shot dead by police within days.

1944 - Nationalists establish the Nyasaland African Congress.

1953 23 October - Despite strong opposition from the Nyasaland African Congress and white liberal activists, Britain combines Nyasaland with the Federation of Northern and Southern Rhodesia (now Zambia and Zimbabwe respectively).

1958 - Dr Hastings Kamuzu Banda, "the black messiah", denounces the federation and returns from the US and the UK, where he has been studying, to lead the Nyasaland African Congress.

1959 - Violent clashes between the Congress supporters and the colonial authorities lead to the banning of the organisation. Many leaders, including Banda, are arrested and a state of emergency is declared.

Malawi Congress Party is founded as a successor to the Nyasaland African Congress.

1960 - Banda is released from Gwelo prison and attends talks in London with the British government on constitutional reform.

1961 - Elections held for a new Legislative Assembly. Banda's Malawi Congress Party wins 94% of the vote.

1963 - Territory is granted self-government as Nyasaland and Banda is appointed prime minister.


1964 6 July - Nyasaland declares independence as Malawi.

1966 6 July - Banda becomes president of the Republic of Malawi. The constitution establishes a one-party state. Opposition movements are suppressed and their leaders are detained. Foreign governments and organisations raise concerns about human rights.

1971 - Banda is voted president-for-life.

1975 - Lilongwe replaces Zomba as capital.

1978 - First elections since independence. All potential candidates must belong to the Malawi Congress Party and be approved by Banda. He excludes many of them by submitting them to an English test.

1980s - Several ministers and politicians are killed or charged with treason. Banda reshuffles his ministers regularly, preventing the emergence of a political rival.

1992 - Catholic bishops publicly condemn Banda, sparking demonstrations. Many donor countries suspend aid over Malawi's human rights record.

1993 - President Banda becomes seriously ill.

Voters in a referendum reject the one-party state, paving the way for members of parties other than the Malawi Congress Party to hold office.

Muluzi elected

1994 - Presidential and municipal elections: Bakili Muluzi, leader of the United Democratic Front, is elected president. He immediately frees political prisoners and re-establishes freedom of speech.

Banda announces his retirement from politics.

1997 - Banda dies in hospital in South Africa where he is being treated for pneumonia.

1999 - President Muluzi is re-elected for a second and final five-year term.

2000 - World Bank says it will cancel 50% of Malawi's foreign debt.

2002 - Drought causes crops to fail across southern Africa. Government is accused of worsening crisis through mismanagement and corruption, including selling off national grain reserves before drought struck.

Banda's successor Bakili Muluzi spent 10 years in office

2002 September - Railway line linking central Malawi and Mozambican port of Nacala reopens after almost 20 years, giving access to Indian Ocean.

2004 May - Government says it will provide free anti-viral drugs to Aids sufferers.

Bingu wa Mutharika, ruling United Democratic Party (UDF) candidate, declared presidential election winner. Observers, opposition criticise poll.

2005 January - Three UDF officials are charged with treason after carrying guns to a meeting with President Mutharika. The president later pardons the trio.

Mutharika's struggles

2005 February - President Mutharika resigns from the UDF over what he says is its hostility to his anti-corruption campaign. He forms the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

2005 June - President Mutharika survives an impeachment motion backed by the UDF. The speaker of parliament dies after collapsing during angry exchanges over the motion.

2005 November - Agriculture minister says five million people need food aid as Malawi bears the brunt of failed crops and a regional drought.

2006 April - Vice-President Cassim Chilumpha is arrested and charged with treason.

2006 July - Ex-president Bakili Muluzi is arrested on corruption charges.

2006 October - Controversy as American singer Madonna is given temporary rights to adopt a Malawian baby.






Nothing Planned


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