I think the issue of forex shortage should not be a problem between Malawi and Ethiopian Airlines because according to tradingeconomics.com, Ethiopia seems to import more from Malawi than Malawi imports from Ethiopia. In 2020, Malawi imported goods and services worth $7.86 million from Ethiopia and Ethiopia imported goods and services worth $17.03 million from Malawi. Ethiopia can decide to clear out the value of the Malawi imports against their imports and remit the difference which is a surplus of the balance of payment to Malawi. Surely, if Ethiopian Airlines is one of the services Malawi imports from Ethiopia, Malawi technically has the ability to settle this payment. If trading in dollars, pounds or euros is the problem, I should believe that if Ethiopia is able to remit its trade surplus in Ethiopian Currency(ETB), we would be able to settle the current amount and future purchases of Ethiopian Airlines tickets using the Ethiopian currency.
I am a proponent of the idea that trade between Ethiopia and Malawi should not be settled using a third-party currency like the dollars, euros or pounds when Ethiopia and Malawi both have currencies of their own. Ministry of Trade & Industry - Malawi could consider facilitating a trading arrangement between Ethiopia and Malawi where we can trade in our own local currencies, the Malawi Kwacha(MWK) and Ethiopian Birr(ETB) after all there is a profitable bilateral trade between the two countries to the advantage of Malawians.