Urban Development


The Department of Urban Development was established to be managing the sustainable social, economic, physical development and growth of cities and urban areas.  It is also expected to enforce and monitor the compliance of urban related policies, strategies, guidelines and regulations to ensure sustainable growth of cities.

The work of the Department touches on all aspects of national transformation and has far-reaching consequences on economic development and sustainable wealth creation. The functions of the department will enable Malawi to achieve Sustainable Development Goal number 11, adopted in September 2015, and the New Urban Agenda adopted in Quito, Ecuador in October 2016.

As a policy holder, the Department provides urban development policy direction to cities and councils and other stakeholders which are policy implementing agencies.


To promote sustainable economic and physical development and growth of cities and urban centres through the provision of an enabling policy and institutional framework.


Sustainably developed, inclusive, safe, resilient cities and urban areas.


To provide direction for urban systems that support socio-economic and industrial development.  Special emphasis will be on the seven prioritized urban development themes: aesthetics, city marketing, transport and road infrastructure, power and water provision, economic development, job creation, and sanitation


Improved and sustainable urban systems in cities that will contribute to the orderly and coordinated development and economic growth. 


The department will achieve its goal through the implementation of the following strategies:

1.Providing policy and institutional framework to support urban development planning and management.

2.Supporting the development of mechanisms and structures for local authorities to improve their capacity in planning and management of urban development.

3.Promoting sustainable physical and economic development and growth of urban centres.

4.Providing support processes of enhancing the appeal of cities to local and foreign investment.

5.Providing support to the processes of urban renewal.

6.Providing support to the processes of slum upgrading.

7.    Supporting local authorities to create job, training and skills centres.

8.    Promoting the development of sustainable, safe, resilient cities and urban centres.

9.    Providing platform for the discussion of urban development challenges and emerging issues.



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