Thursday, June 15, 2017

President Nyusi visits the United States

Resultado de imagem para nyusi na américaMozambican President Filipe Nyusi declared in Washington on Wednesday that Mozambique “is back on the path to economic growth and development”, showing clear signs of overcoming the obstacles it has faced recently.He was speaking at the opening of the 11th US-Africa Business Summit, which is convened every two years by the Corporate Council on Africa. This is a trade association set up in 1993 to promote business and investment between the US and African countries.  “Today we can say that Mozambique is back as a country with a prospering economy”, said Nyusi. This was not merely because of recent discoveries of vast reserves of mineral resources, particularly natural gas, in which American companies are playing an important role. Nyusi stressed that the opportunities in Mozambique cover many other areas, including agriculture, electricity generation and distribution, and the production and sale of industrial and consumer goods.
“Thus Mozambique is back, back to transform into wealth the enormous potential and countless business opportunities that it offers”, said the President, as he invited US businesses to invest.   As a signal of the trust that Mozambique now enjoys internationally, Nyusi pointed to the official launch, on 1 June, of the project to produce liquefied natural gas on a floating platform above the Coral South gas field in the Rovuma Basin, about 50 kilometres from the coast of the northern province of Cabo Delgado.The operator of this project is the Italian energy company, ENI, heading a consortium which also includes the China National Petroleum Corporation (CBPB), KOGAS of South Korea, GALP of Portugal and Mozambique’s own National Hydrocarbon Company (ENH). The total cost of the project is put at eight billion US dollars (in addition to the 2.8 billion already spent on exploration and other preliminary work). The floating LNG project “is a great vote of confidence in Mozambique and in our government”, declared Nyusi. “Hence our statement: Mozambique is back, and foreign investment is safe”.He recognized that Mozambique still faces challenges arising from the recent economic crisis, but he believed it was possible to overcome them through the re-establishment of effective peace and political stability. This was a process, Nyusi added, in which he hoped the country could count on the support of all its friends, particularly the United States.

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“The Mozambican people and the business community are awaiting with great expectation the evolution of the hydrocarbon projects in the Rovuma Basin, particularly the exploitation of natural gas”, Nyusi declared.He considered the United States as a strategic partner in this area, and believed that American investment could help make Mozambique one of the largest producers of natural gas in the world. An American company, Anadarko, is the operator of Rovuma Basin Area One, and plans to set up LNG plants onshore, on the Afungi Peninsula, in Palma district. The giant US energy corporation, ExxonMobil, has agreed to purchase a large share in Area Four from ENI, and it too will set up onshore LNG plants. Nyusi believed that, in the coming years, the United States will become the largest single investor in Mozambique. “These are investments that transform the structure of the Mozambican economy”, he said, “and they mark a sharply positive turn in the history of Mozambique’s relations with the US”.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Mozambique natural gas

Imagem relacionadaThe Centre for Public Integrity (CPI), a Mozambican non-governmental organisation whose mission is to monitor the public administration, thinks that there is a certain level of uncertainty with regards to expectations of revenue from natural gas.The not-for-profit body is also critical of the lack of transparency in the extractive sector. “Revenue expectations for the state of about $18 billion within 30 years may well be realised, but it may also not,” the CPI says in a report published on Monday. “Everything depends on the price at which the gas will be sold.”Last week, the Italian firm Eni and its partners (Portuguese-based energy group Galp, the Japanese conglomerate Mitsui, Chinese energy giant CNPC and State-controlled ENH) finally signed off on a US$7 billion investment in a project to export natural gas from Mozambique in Area 4 of the Rovuma basin. During a ceremony in the capital Maputo, last Thursday, they also formally approved the construction of a floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) plant with a capacity of about 3.4 million tons a year.While raising uncertainty about the management of those gas resources and the country’s exposure to price fluctuations, the CPI recognised the benefits of such projects for the country, especially in terms of job creation, making of Mozambique one of the major leading exporters of LNG in the world behind Algeria and Nigeria.

However, the CPI underscores a lack of transparency, noting that the price of the gas which British Petroleum has recently agreed to pay the Eni-led consortium is not known by the public. Moreover, the Mozambican government has indicated that the revenues will first be allocated to pay for the capital invested in the project before entering the state’s coffers as tax revenues. Of the $8 billion needed for gas extraction and liquefaction, 60 percent was sourced from a network of 15 banks with loans being rated by at least five rating agencies.The CPI is also concerned with cost management, as it is not rare to observe far higher costs than expected during the execution of an investment. This, combined with the risk of selling the natural resources at a price below the current market price, constitute significant risks for the state in its revenue management.

Advantages in Chinese currency transactions

Millennium Bim bank has launched a Chinese currency transaction service that offers a number of advantages, a press release sent to Club of Mozambique says. Customers who import Chinese products and services will now be able to make their payments in Chinese currency.This measure aims to facilitate business and trade between the Millennium Bim clients and their Chinese suppliers, at a time when China is becoming one of Mozambique’s main economic partners.
Resultado de imagem para moeda chinesaThis service was created under the China International Payment System (CIPS) and customers who wish to benefit from it have to comply with the documentation requirements of the Chinese authorities. These transactions do not have a transfer limit, but do require that beneficiary companies have accounts based in Chinese territory.The service responds to a growing market need, and Millennium Bim’s offer of the new service demonstrates its interest in and concern for its clients.The service joins a suite of services that Millennium Bim has created for companies, including a recently launched business credit card which guarantees better management of the company’s accounts, including employees’ expenses.Millennium Bim’s objective is to remain at the forefront of innovation, providing its customers the best services with the best conditions.

Lichinga start again next week

Freight rail services between Nacala-Porto, Nampula, Cuamba and Lichinga resume next week, thanks to an understanding reached between the government, entrepreneurs and the Northern Development Corridor company (CDN).
Resultado de imagem para linha ferroviaria cuambaThe news was announced yesterday by President Filipe Nyusi at a rally in the village of Maleme, Sanga district, marking the beginning of his three-day working visit to Niassa province.High prices charged by the Northern Development Corridor (CDN) had meant that only passenger services were operating on the Lichinga line, forcing entrepreneurs to use road transport between Cuamba and Lichinga, which is costly due to poor road conditions.
As for rail transport, the CDN was charging the equivalent of US$75.53 per tonne between Nacala Porto in Nampula province, and the city of Lichinga in Niassa province, a distance of about 795 kilometres.Truck drivers were charging US$50 per ton on the same route.
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After negotiations, the rail price has been set at US$47.54 per tonne.A total of 15 wagons of 35 tonnes each will be mobilised in the first phase, the number expected to rise gradually depending on demand, according to Niassa Provincial Director of Transport and Communications António Mateus.At the end of 2016, President Nyusi re-inaugurated the262-kilometre Cuamba-Lichinga railroad after several years out of service due to disrepair. After operations on this section restarted, business people and the population in general had hoped that life in Niassa, characterised by high prices for even essential products, would improve, but transportation costs prevent this.

“We promise to do everything to develop Niassa. One of the big problems, when we started our term in office, was to extend rail freight services to Lichinga. This means of transportation already reaches the city, but just carrying passengers,” Nyusi said at the rally.As part of the effort to improve roads in the area, President Nyusi will today break ground for the construction of the N13 between Cuamba and Lichinga.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Sweden has full confidence in PGR’s work ....

The Swedish embassy in Maputo yesterday expressed confidence in the way the Attorney General of the Republic of Mozambique (PGR) is dealing with the results of the audit of hidden debts, advocating the release of the document as soon as possible.The Swedish embassy funded the audit required by a group of international partners to resume support to the Mozambican state, after the disclosure, a year ago, of hidden debts amounting to US$1.4 billion.  “The audit report on public debt] is in the hands of the authorities, I think they are going to publish it. We have a very good collaboration with the PGR and we have full confidence in their work,” Andreas Perez Fransius, economic and commercial attache at the Swedish embassy, told Lusa.
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Regarding the results of the audit, he continued, the justice system in Mozambique must act as in other sovereign states, taking the appropriate measures to the case.    “It would be inconvenient for me to comment on what measures to take, I trust them to take this process to the end,” he said.Fransius argued that the PGR should inform the Mozambican public of the results of the report as soon as they finish evaluating the document.     “This report is now in the hands of the PGR, which is making its assessment to see if the terms of reference have been met. The next step will be taken by the attorney general who will share this information with the Mozambican public,” Fransius added.The British branch of the North American research firm Kroll last month delivered to the Attorney General’s Office of Mozambique its audit of the so-called hidden debts endorsed by the former Mozambican government between 2013 and 2015.The audit was paid for by the Swedish government and came as a result of pressure from international financial institutions and major donors to the Mozambican state budget following the disclosure, in April last year, of debts of US$1.4 billion contracted by publicly-owned companies linked to maritime security with the endorsement of the Mozambican government.The discovery of the debts led the main donors and the international financial institutions to suspend aid to the country, subjecting the resumption of support to the conducting of an audit.

Monday, June 5, 2017

Mozambique is less peaceful than ten years ago

Mozambique has lost 10 places in the ranking of the Global Peace Index (GPI) conceived and published by the Institute of Economics and Peace (IEP), based in Autralia. It now ranks 78th from 68th last year, behind Swaziland and before Benin.TheIEP is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit think-tank dedicated to shifting the world’s focus to peace as a positive, achievable, and tangible measure of human well-being and progress. Its GPI comprises 23 indicators of the violence or fear of violence, these being originally selected with the assistance of the expert panel in 2007 and have been reviewed by the expert panel on an annual basis.
Resultado de imagem para africa australLooking back over a ten year period to 2008, Mozambique now features at the bottom of the 10 most at risk countries in 2008. The report also shows a list of 20 countries that fell into conflict after 2008. These are all countries that did not have battle deaths in 2008, but subsequently experienced more than 25 battle deaths in any given year. Of these 20 countries, two are in the top 10 countries most at risk, including Syria, Mozambique, Angola, Cameroon and Yemen.In mid-2013, after more than twenty years of peace, rebel group Renamo insurgency was renewed in the central and northern regions of the country. Former Mozambican president Armando Guebuza and the leader of Renamo, Afonso Dhlakama, signed in September 2014 the Accord on Cessation of Hostilities, which brought the military hostilities to a halt before the general election that took place in October that same year.
Those elections were unfortunately followed by a new political crisis, bringing Mozambique back into violence, after Renamo said it did not recognize the validity of the election results, demanding the control of six provinces (Nampula, Niassa,Tete, Zambezia, Sofala, and Manica) where they claim to have won a majority.Globally, the Sub-Saharan continent’s average score has deteriorated again this year, though its global position in the GPI, ahead of Russia and Eurasia, remains unchanged. Ethiopia suffered the biggest decline, both in the region and globally, as violent demonstrations, partly driven by rising ethnic tensions, led the government to introduce a six-month state of emergency in October 2016.In Lesotho, political tensions have remained at a high level, in the wake of an attempted military coup in 2014, and political instability has been exacerbated by the recent collapse of the ruling coalition. In Burundi, the number and duration of internal conflicts and the likelihood of violent demonstrations remain a major drag on the country’s score.

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“What began as a series of protests against the controversial re-election of the president in 2015 has evolved into a loosely organized resistance movement, with the targeted assassination by rebel groups of senior government and military officials”, recalls the IEP in its report.Finally, the IEP underscores that if the Positive Peace deficit model (PPDM) had been used as a forecasting tool for allocating peacebuilding funding, the ten most ‘at risk’ countries in 2008 would have been allocated a peacebuilding amount totaling $47.3 billion over the next ten years (in constant 2014 dollars) calculated at the unit-cost rate ($27 per capita per year), between 2008 and 2017. As a reminder, the PPDM provides a reasonable assessment of countries at risk of deteriorations in peace and compared to other models it provides a more accurate predictive capacity.

Will Trump’s coal controversy help Mozambique?

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US coal producers welcomed President Trump’s decision on Thursday to pull his country out of the Paris climate deal, fulfilling his campaign promises to favour his ‘America First’ agenda by securing more local jobs in the industrial and manufacturing sectors.Criticism from other business executives immediately followed the announcement, these saying that such a move would hurt US companies’ ability to work abroad and inhibit innovation. “Climate change is real”, thus tweeted General Electric’s CEO, Jeff Immelt, cited by BBC, adding that the industry must now lead and not depend on government.For his part, Tesla boss Elon Musk confirmed he would quit two seats on White House advisory groups, also invoking the reality of climate change. “Leaving Paris is not good for America or the world”, he said, while Walt Disney chief executive Robert Iglar explained that he too would quit an advisory role.Several other major companies, including Morgan Stanley, Unilever, Intel and big tech firms, such as Apple, had opposed withdrawal, saying it would have spurred energy innovation in the US, among other benefits. 
Resultado de imagem para carvao moatize  ambienteEnergy companies, including Exxon Mobil and Chevron, had also pressed the administration to remain in the pact.Under the deal, the US, which accounts for about 15% of global greenhouse gas emission, had committed to a 26% to 28% reduction from 2005 levels by 2025. The US also promised $3 billion in aid to a United Nations fund to help poorer countries to tackle climate change problems.In his announcement on Thursday, Mr Trump said the deal, which involved voluntary commitments, put the US at a disadvantage. He said he would be willing to renegotiate under different terms. “The rest of the world applauded when we signed the Paris Agreement — they went wild; they were so happy — for the simple reason that it put our country, the United States of America, which we all love, at a very, very big economic disadvantage” Donald Trump said. “They don’t put America first.”
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It remains to be seen what impact such a decision will have on Mozambique, one of the most attractive markets in sub-Saharan Africa, according to BMI Research’s Mozambique Operational Risk Report, cited by the specialized information platform World Coal. Its key exports markets are, as expected, Asian countries (India, Taiwan, China and Japan).Coal production in the Moatize Basin, in the province of Tete, expanded in 2016, also benefiting from the conclusion in March 2016 of the Tete-Nacala rail link. With its rail-seaport coal terminal infrastructure now capable of handling 22 million tonnes per year, production and exports are set to reach new records in 2017, according to the African Development Bank.

Monday, May 29, 2017

CONGRATULATIONS TO RADIO MOZAMBIQUE

Resultado de imagem para radio moçambiqueWe will always be the best when we are able to make a difference. This is a motto that I have been advocating for many years here in this newspaper. For the country to leave definitively on the podium of poverty statistics, every Mozambican must make a difference in indifference. It is not the problem of money that puts us in these situations of poverty, it is the lack of wide views to make the difference of this "dog world."
I think that Radio Moçambique's top management has read the signs of time and is giving a new impetus to the way people communicate. After all, "the people are the ones who order the most." Through www.rm.co.mz, it is already possible to listen, in addition to the National Antenna, to the provincial issuer of Gaza, the provincial issuer of Sofala, RM-sport, and much more. Soon will join the provincial issuer of Nampula.
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Here is an answer to what it is to be a public service. Note: a public service entirely devoted to the interests of the citizen. That deserves applause. This is what must be done in favor of National Unity: to enable Mozambicans to communicate in their local languages. The public service is exactly this: to allow the people to exercise their sovereignty and their citizenship, in particular. With these transformations, the RM is being a very powerful engine of communication to pull by the culture.
Those who are abroad now have the opportunity to be closer to their cultural roots. As is my case, these roots nourish me. I am Tetanus and am glad when I hear the news, the programs in languages ​​Xindau and Xisena, which are close relatives of cinyungue. You always better listen, for example, "I love you" in mother tongues than in Portuguese. That is why it is worth promoting the national languages, because they are born of the "womb" of our being. That is, they are born of our mother nature. Portuguese is for us, an exotic language.
Radio Mozambique should act as a kind of "hinge" or "knee" between "we" and "our" culture. Nature speaks and sends out important messages, but we ignore it because we are possessed by other habits and cultures. To reinforce the aspects already mentioned, Radio Moçambique must make us drunk with the grace of our culture, not with political and ideological vaccines.
Resultado de imagem para radio moçambiqueFor a long time, there was a deterioration in the quality of public services in Radio Moçambique, mediocrity was a sign of the house, cultural programs ceased to exist, the history of the country (even with its mythologies) was no longer counted, the reflection was Forbidden, dogmatism was defended, mutilating free thinking. Fortunately there are strong signs of reversal. I feel on the present board of directors a great enthusiasm to make a difference. Just do not see who does not want. Let us not forget that the levels of escangalhamentos were so evident that the syringes were useless for the calloused buttocks.
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I hope these services work without patches. It is our country's culture, we rarely manage to keep the people's benefit working for a long time, we always bet on mediocrity, always and always.
Zicomo and a nhúngue embrace to Father Manuel Maria Madureira da Silva with whom I was recently in Évora and from whom I won another literary work "Fracturing Questions" (and a beautiful dedication "To Viriato Dias with a taste for reading"). To Fr. Aniceto Dangala, my spiritual protector, there is a Nungo embrace and my cordial greetings. And the children, by the first of June, a nun-kiss in the heart.

(Spark by Viriato Caetano Dias)

Friday, May 26, 2017

Caia/Nacala transmission line

Construction work on the Caia/Nacala power transmission line in Mozambique begins in 2018, a project intended to increase the reliability of the electricity consumed in the provinces of Zambézia, Nampula, Niassa and Cabo Delgado, state-owned electricity company Electricidade de Moçambique (EdM) reported in a statement issued in Maputo.Split into two phases, this project will start with the construction of the link between Caia in the province of Sofala and Mocuba, in Zambézia. Financing of US$200 million has already been secured under an agreement signed in 2015 with the Islamic Development Bank.Electricidade de Moçambique reported that it is currently involved in raising an additional US$420 million to finance the second phase of the project, with potential partners being the African Development Bank, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the Export-Import Bank of China.
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A part of Tete province and the whole of the provinces of Zambézia, Nampula, Cabo Delgado and Niassa are supplied with electricity by the Centre/North line, with just a small disturbance affecting thousands of consumers located in those provinces.One of the most serious incidents occurred in January 2015 when 12 pylons fell, causing a disruption in power supply throughout the northern region of the country for about a month.Electricidade de Moçambique said in the statement that the Caia/Nacala power transmission line is of “extreme importance”, since it will ensure redundancy in the power system for the northern region of the country.

Malawi accuses Mozambique

Imagem relacionadaMalawi Government has accused Mozambique of standing on the way of former president Bingu wa Mutharika’s signature dream project of Nsanje Inland Port now adopted by President Peter Mutharika.Spokesperson for the ministry of Transport and Public Works James Chakwera said a Sadc feasibility study cleared the government to start the waterway project.“The Sadc feasibility study is in support of the project but it is Mozambique that is rejecting it,” he said.He said Mozambique continues to describe the Nsanje World Inland Port as non viable.Chakweta said Malawi is failing to proceed with its own feasibility study because of the resistance from Mozambique.“The onus is now on the political leadership from the two countries, President Mutharika and his Mozambican counterpart,” he said.The issue came into limelight recently when Mutharika told the IMF deputy managing director that the project stands to benefit Mozambique and Zambia as well.The President marketed the project ahead of the 2019 campaign as he promised to complete the project once voted into power in 2014.Finance minister Goodall Gondwe also said the government has set aside some funds for the project in this year’s K1.3 trillion budget.However, he has not said how much the government has factored in.

Dhlakama criticises but “understands” slow progress

The president of Renamo complained yesterday of slowness in the work of the two negotiating commissions formed with the government and in the withdrawal of the armed forces from the centre of the country, but said he understood the situation.Talking about the peace process in a telephone statement to journalists and Renamo supporters, Dhlakama said: “I have been talking to Brother Nyusi: there is slowness, it is not what I expected.”Dhlakama was speaking from his base in the central Gorongosa mountain range to Renamo supporters and members at a party meeting in Matola outside Maputo.
Answering a question from Lusa, the Renamo leader said he had hoped to see “the work of the two commissions already finished and entering the Assembly of the Republic before 11 May,” the last day of the legislative session, but “it did not happen”.
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One commission is negotiating a review of state decentralisation laws, with Renamo calling for the election rather than appointment of provincial governors as early as 2019.Military matters such as the reintegration of Renamo armed men into Mozambican troops and the separation between political parties and the armed forces are being discussed in another commission.No proposal has yet come to parliament and although he considers the pace slow, Dhlakama also says he understands the reasons.“Renamo is demanding democratization, to change the law, and naturally there is resistance,” he said.

Dhlakama pointed out, however, that even foreign investors have realized “that the end of war is not enough, institutions must be reformed”, and insists that the two commissions must produce bills by the end of the year.The indefinite truce declared by Renamo earlier this month depends on the understanding reached and for a peace agreement to be signed, he reaffirmed. In his statement yesterday, Dhlakama also reaffirmed his party’s argument that there is no point in having government-appointed governors in provinces where Renamo often wins elections, meaning most of the northern and central regions of the country.The Renamo leader also noted that Mozambican troops are still occupying positions in the Serra da Gorongosa, the main theatre of conflict between Renamo and the military, which he described as the “armed wing of Frelimo”.Dhlakama would like to see the withdrawal proceed more quickly but he claimed to “understand” the logistical issues involved and stressed that there is still time before the agreed 30 June deadline for full withdrawal.In the frame are 26 positions occupied by the Mozambican Defence and Security Forces, he said.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

“Calmness” – IMF

The IMF permanent representative in Mozambique, Ari Aisen, told Lusa yesterday that the results of the audit of the country’s hidden debts, to be made known Friday, should be received with “calmness”.
Resultado de imagem para ari aisen mocambique“We have to be very calm right now. The Attorney General’s Office is leading this process in a sovereign way and we [the IMF] are helping and are waiting calmly for the report,” Aisen said.According to Aisen, the Mozambican government has already shown that it is concerned about regaining the confidence of the international partners and, at this moment, the most important thing is to ensure that the process moves forward.
“Obviously we still have some work to do and we hope that in the coming months we can move forward with this process that we have already started with the government,” he said. Aisen said that an IMF program would be welcome at a time when the country is going through an economic crisis.
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“We want to help the country achieve its goals,” he said, reiterating his call for calm. “After the audit results, we will continue to follow up, always as good partners,” he concluded.
Kroll Associates UK is preparing an independent audit of Proindicus, Ematum (Mozambican Tuna Company) and MAM (Mozambique Asset Management), three companies owned mainly by the State Information and Security Services (SISE) and created during the government of former president Armando Guebuza. Between 2013 and 2014, ProIndicus contracted a loan of US$622 million (EUR 586 million) with Credit Suisse and Russian VTB bank with guarantees from the Mozambican government, given without the knowledge of the Mozambican parliament and international donor institutions.
The Mozambican government also endorsed a US$535 million loan in favour of MAM, an enterprise set up ostensibly for maritime safety activities, also without the knowledge of the Mozambican parliament or the International Monetary Fund (IMF). To this sum was added more than US$727.5 million (EUR 684.8 million) in sovereign debt securities resulting from the conversion of the corporate bonds issued by Ematum. An independent international audit of these hidden debts was a precondition of the IMF resuming support to Mozambique following the suspension of its funding in April 2016, along with that of 14 other state budget donors.


3 containers seized in Nacala port

ironwood.tvmThree containers of iron-wood about to be exported illegally to China have been confiscated in Nacala-Porto in Nampula province. The product was cut in a special closed season and had arrived at the port with false documentation declaring it cashew nuts.The three containers were part of a total of five, two of which were exported last January. The three remained on Mozambican soil because it was not possible to load them at the time.A Verdade speculates that the ease with which the wood in question passed through checkpoints on the basis of false documents leads to the presumption that the inspectors were somehow persuaded to turn a blind eye.A source from the Customs in Nacala-Porto told @Verdade that the owners of the merchandise tried to deceive the authorities that it was cashew nuts, but an inspection team detected an anomaly and ordered the containers to be opened.Surprisingly, the alleged cashew nuts turned out to be iron-wood, a species which, according to government officials, is rare in Nampula province and could only have been obtained fraudulently in Zambezia.
The Mozambican government has banned the cutting and export of ironwood for five years because it is in danger of extinction, for ignoring which the owners of the seized wood will incur a fine of one million meticals ( around US$16,367.00 at current exchange rates), to which will be added a further 500,000 meticais (US$8,183.00) because the wood was cut during the closed season.The wood will revert to the state and a criminal case will be opened, our source reveals. As a result of the documents and containers being confiscated, the owners of the merchandise are known, although at the time of going to press no-one had been arrested or charged for a crime that would have cost the Mozambican state millions of meticais.This is not the first time that large consignments of wood have been seized in Nacala-Porto. Four months ago, another two containers of illicitly trafficked wood were discovered there, this time masquerading as cotton fibre.

Machava wins first gold for Mozambique

Resultado de imagem para Creve Armando MachavaCreve Armando Machava won the men’s 400-metre hurdles final on Friday to seal Mozambique’s first-ever Islamic Solidarity Games gold medal.The 21-year-old remained calm throughout a tight race at Baku’s Olympic Stadium to edge to victory in a time of 50.73 seconds, ahead of Senegalese silver medallist Amadou Ndiaye by 0.21 seconds.Ndiaye came on strongly near the end to power past another Mozambique athlete Kurt Couto, who faded badly.The 32-year-old Couto clung on in 50.97s to take bronze.

Moroccan middle-distance star Rababe Arafi successfully defended her women’s 1 500-metre title after pulling away from Turkey’s Meryem Akdag to secure victory.The 26-year-old finished ninth in the world championship final two years ago and also made the Olympic final, and she cruised to gold despite not troubling her personal best.Arafi won in four minutes and 18.82 seconds, over a whole second clear of Akdag, who clinched silver in 4:19:91.Algeria’s Amina Bettiche (4:21:29) threw herself forward to snatch bronze on the line from Bahrain’s Tigist Gashaw, who missed out on the podium by just 0.02s.Arafi’s gold is Morocco’s fifth athletics title of the Games in Baku.Azerbaijan clinched yet another track and field gold on Friday as Elena Chebanu clocked 24.69 seconds to win the women’s 200-metre T12 disability final.Chebanu won comfortably from Indonesia’s Endang Sitorus, who sealed silver, while Morocco’s Meryem En-Nourhi grabbed bronze.

Mozambique and Brazil sign agreements

The Mozambican and Brazilian Foreign Ministers, Oldemiro Baloi and Aloysio Ferreira, on Thursday signed in Maputo legal instruments, notably on social security, to promote and strengthen cooperation relations between the two countries.Baloi explained that the social security agreement will allow citizens of both countries to enjoy the same rights in such matters as old age pensions and sickness benefits. “This agreement will make Brazilians feel less foreign in Mozambique, and Mozambicans less foreign in Brazil”, he said.The two ministers also signed memoranda of understanding on political consultations and on the environment.
Resultado de imagem para oldemiro baloiBaloi said the agreement on political consultations “is a mere formalisation, since the practice is already consolidated between the two countries”.For his part, Ferreira said the Brazilian government has a vast range of projects in which it is cooperating with Mozambique, notably in agriculture, the environment, mineral resource management and rural development.Later in the day, Ferreira decorated Baloi with the National Order of the Southern Cross, the highest honour awarded by Brazil to foreigners.Baloi said that this honour represents for him the commitment of the teams who have accompanied him in his career as a public servant. He stressed that the Mozambican and Brazilian governments have made great efforts to guarantee progress in bilateral cooperation.
Resultado de imagem para Aloysio Ferreira“The seeds sown by Brazilian and Mozambican leaders, more than four decades ago, have germinated and flowered in fertile ground”, he declared. “We can note, with great satisfaction, the undoubted evolution in relations between our two governments, the cooperation between our countries, and the ever greater closeness between our peoples”.

Ferreira praised the “vast experience” of Baloi in promoting peace, concord and cooperation between African countries and the members of the Community of Portuguese Speaking Counties (CPLP). He stressed that Baloi had used diplomacy as an instrument at the service of the development and well-being of Mozambicans.Ferreira also decorated one of Mozambique’s top writers, Paulina Chiziane, with the same honour.

Shell and Heineken in Mozambique

Investments by the Dutch companies Shell and Heineken in Mozambique are at an advanced stage of implementation, according to the director of the government’s Investment Promotion Centre (CPI), Lourenco Sambo.Speaking in the Hague to Mozambican reporters who are accompanying President Filipe Nyusi’s official visit to Holland, Sambo said that the investment by Shell is to set up a “gas to liquid” (GTL) plant, that will transform natural gas from the Rovuma Basin, in the far north of Mozambique, into liquid fuels
“We shall visit Shell and we will have a business meeting to check exactly what the company has done and is doing in this regard”, said Sambo.
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In January, Shell was one of the three winners of the tender for the use of Rovuma Basin gas for the Mozambican domestic market. Shell’s proposal was to use 310 to 330 million cubic feet of gas a day to produce 38,000 barrels of liquid fuels, and 50 to 80 megawatts of electricity. The other successful bidders were the Norwegian company Yara International, which requested 80 to 90 million cubic feet of gas a day to produce fertilizer and to generate 50 to 80 megawatts of power, and GTL Energy of Australia which plans to use 41.8 million cubic feet of gas a day to generate 250 megawatts of electricity. Sambo said that Shell’s investment in this project will be at least 500 million US dollars. The investments by Shell, Yara and GTL will make use of 20 per cent of the Rovuma Basin gas.
Resultado de imagem para heineken cervejaAs for Heineken, this company wants to build a brewery in Manhica district, about 80 kilometres north of Maputo, in which it is prepared to invest 100 million dollars.But it is pushing for lower taxes on alcoholic drinks. “The great dilemma is that it wants taxes like the ones it enjoyed in Ethiopia, for example”, said Sambo. “We also think the tax is too high, because there are even drinks producers that are closing in Mozambique”.Sambo said that a factory that used to produce spirits closed its doors because of the supposedly high level of tax. CDM (Beers of Mozambique), which produces the major brands of Mozambican beer, also decided not to branch out into spirits, because of the tax problem.Sambo said the government intends to submit to the Mozambican parliament, the Assembly of the Republic, a bill to revise the tax “because it is a barrier to investment”.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

PRICES OF LIQUID FUELS FALL

The Mozambican Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy has announced a reduction in the prices of petrol, diesel and kerosene, taking effect as from Wednesday.The price of a litre of petrol falls from 56.06 meticais (about 90 US cents, at current exchange rates) to 53.57 meticais, a decline of 4.4 per cent. For diesel the price drop is negligible, at just 0.2 per cent – a litre now costs 51.79 rather than 51.89 meticais.The sharpest fall is in the price of kerosene, often regarded as the fuel of the poor. Kerosene now costs 37.88 rather than 41.62 meticais a litre, a reduction of nine per cent.But the price of cooking gas (butane, or LPG) rises sharply, from 61.08 to 70.32 meticais per kilo, an increase of 15.1 per cent. The price of compressed natural gas rises by 2.9 per cent, from 25.59 to 26.34 meticais a kilo.The Ministry statement announcing the new prices said they result from the implementation of a government decree of 2012, which requires monthly reviews of fuel prices. The prices at the pumps will be raised or lowered if, since the last review, the import prices of liquid fuels have moved by more than three per cent in either direction.The previous government, under President Armando Guebuza, had disregarded this mechanism, and opted instead for an extremely expensive policy of generalised fuel subsidies. Those subsidies have now been scrapped and, according to the deputy national director of fuel and hydrocarbons, Almirante Dima, interviewed by the independent television station STV, the prices at Mozambican filling stations are now market prices.Dima said it had been possible to reduce petrol, diesel and kerosene prices, partly because of a fall in world market prices, and partly because of the steady recovery of the Mozambican currency, the metical, against the US dollar, the currency in which fuel imports are denominated.The metical depreciated sharply last year, and by September had fallen to around 80 meticais to the dollar. Central bank intervention, notably through a sharp increase in interest rates, halted and then reversed the depreciation. On Wednesday, the metical was quoted at 62.2 to the dollar.

President and leader of the opposition together in the Netherlands

Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi arrived in Amsterdam on Wednesday morning to start a three day official visit to Holland, at the invitation of Dutch King Willem Alexander.His initial activities are scheduled to include a meeting with Dutch Foreign Minister Bert Koenders, and a visit to the technology centre of the Dutch multinational oil company, Shell. Nyusi’s agenda also includes a visit to the Hague on Thursday, where he will be received by the speakers of the two chambers of the Dutch parliament. He will also tour the Erasmus Centre for Entrepreneurship in Rotterdam, and the port of Rotterdam.That day, the President will also take part in a round table with academics and Dutch NGOs that operate in Mozambique. He will attend a Holland-Mozambique business forum, organized by the Netherlands-Africa Business Council. According to the general manager of the council, Irene Visser, around 80 Dutch companies have so far confirmed their participation at the Forum.On Friday, the last day of the visit, Nyusi will hold official talks with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, and will meet with the Mozambican community resident in Holland.
The composition of Nyusi’s delegation is noteworthy because it includes a leader of the opposition, namely the Mayor of Beira and head of the Mozambique Democratic Movement (MDM), Daviz Simango, who is expected to attend several of the meetings of an economic nature.
Mozambique and Holland cooperate in areas such as food and nutritional security, water and sanitation, education, and sexual and reproductive health.The balance of trade between the two countries is in Mozambique’s favour, largely because Holland is a major importer of the aluminium ingots made at the Mozal smelter on the outskirts of Maputo.Mozambican exports to Holland (mostly aluminium, fruit and tobacco) in 2016 amounted to 114 million euros (about 126 million US dollars), while imports from Holland (including fossil fuels, and transport equipment) were valued at 33 million euros.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

New sugar factory

Resultado de imagem para chembaA new sugar production plant will start operating in the Chemba district next October, raising the number of sugar factories operating in Sofala province, in central Mozambique, to three, the district administrator said.João Geral Patrício said the factory, a South African investment, will have an installed capacity to produce 50 tonnes of sugar per day,and its raw material will be sugarcane produced in an irrigated area of about 2,500 hectares .Of this area, about 1,000 hectares will be explored directly by the investors and the remaining 1,500 hectares by two agricultural cooperatives with 250 members each, according to Mozambican daily newspaper Notícias.The district administrator said that the launch of this plant, the third after the Companhia de Sena in Marromeu, and the Mafambisse sugar mill in Dondo, is expected to have a direct impact on the lives of the district’s 93,000 inhabitants.Patrício mentioned the initial benefits of job creation, drinking water supply, construction of classrooms and training of young people, as well as training activities directly related to the planting and treatment of sugarcane.The district of Chemba is 565 kilometres from the city of Beira, the provincial capital of Sofala.

Ranked 22nd most attractive African

Mozambique is the 22nd most attractive African country for investors and second among Portuguese-speaking countries, behind Cape Verde, which ranked 18th in this year’s edition of EY consultancy’s Foreign Investment Attractiveness Programme.The list is led by Morocco, Kenya and South Africa. With Cape Verde improving six places compared to last year’s ranking and Mozambique dropping two, the list does not include any other Portuguese-speaking country in the top 25 places.“Investor sentiment about Africa should remain less buoyant in the coming years, which has less to do with Africa’s fundamental conditions than with a world characterised by increased geopolitical uncertainty and increased risk aversion,” EY Africa executive director Ajen Sita commented.

Resultado de imagem para mozambique investment“Investors who are not present in Africa remain positive about long-term investment attractiveness in the continent but are cautious and attentive to the difficulties,” he added.The EY study is based on an analysis of 46 African countries and covers six aspects that are considered fundamental for investors choosing locations for their investment: macroeconomic resilience, market size, ease of business, infrastructure and logistics investment, economic diversification and governance and human development, with the first two accounting for 20 percent and the remainder 15 percent each.The largest foreign investor in the continent in terms of number of projects continues to be the United States, with 91 new investments, followed by France with 81, and China with 66 projects, representing a 106 percent increase over the previous year.In terms of the amount of investment, China is by far the heaviest investor, having channelled US$36.1 billion last year, more than a third of the total invested in the continent, and almost three times as much as the second largest investor, the United Arab Emirates, which spent US$11 billion on 35 projects on the continent.

800 Kg

Resultado de imagem para cornos de lefenteA total of 763 kg of ivory obtained from poaching and held by Mozambican authorities has disappeared from northern Mozambique, the National Administration of Conservation Areas (ANAC) announced yesterday.The ivory comprised 85 pairs tusks held by the Niassa Provincial Forest and Wildlife Services, the Mozambican Information Agency (AIM) reports.The authorities attribute the disappearance to a succession of unsolved robberies that have occurred since April 2016. Thieves hacked through the ceiling of the storage room in the “latest foray”, AIM adds.A team comprising members of the Criminal Investigation Services (SERNIC) and ANAC technicians was created to investigate the case.Elephant and rhinoceros horn, lion and leopard teeth, pelts and claws are among the trophies sought by the international traffic in animal parts in Mozambique.Elephants have been worst affected. AIM says that, in the last five years, the population in the country’s conservation areas has shrunk from about 20,000 to half that number.


Appoint governors not a priority

Renamo leader Afonso Dhlakama said today that the demand of the main opposition party in Mozambique to appoint provincial governors is no longer a priority, defending the election of these leaders in the general elections of 2019.
Resultado de imagem para dhlakama“It is not discarded, it is no longer a priority, I can not say it is discarded, or it is forgotten, because it would disturb the heads of the members and sympathizers and even of the people,” said Afonso Dhlakama, Speaking from the central district of Gorongosa, where he has been a refugee since 2015.Renamo’s demand to govern in the six provinces where the party claims victory in the general elections of 2014 and the consequent refusal of the government of the Mozambican Liberation Front (Frelimo) was the main reason for the country’s return to armed conflict, opposing the two parties.Afonso Dhlakama today extended the indefinite truce in the military conflict with the Government, as a result of the contacts he has been holding with the Mozambican President, Filipe Nyusi.Speaking on a teleconference attended by journalists at the Maputo headquarters of the Mozambican National Resistance (Renamo), Afonso Dhlakama suggested that the party’s demand to rule in the six provinces where it claims victory in the 2014 general elections is unfeasible, expressing an option for a legislative change that imposes the election of governors in the general elections of 2019.
“[For the 2019 elections], it is almost two years away, the priority now is for us to have governors elected in Mozambique,” said Afonso Dhlakama.Populations, he continued, must be governed by elected officials, because it is undemocratic that a province be run by a governor appointed by the head of state of another party.“It is outdated that political parties compete, win elections in the provinces and that there is another party which lost in those provinces and sends someone as if he /she were a commander to impose, this is undemocratic,” he emphasised.
In this perspective, the working group formed by the Government and Renamo to propose a law on decentralisation will draft a law on the election of provincial governors in the 2019 ballot.“As for the decentralisation chapter, it’s very complicated, it’s very complex, it’s very slow, but we’re trying to get things moving,” the Renamo leader said.
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The group that discusses military affairs, he continued, will have to submit by the end of this year a proposal on the integration model of Renamo armed men in the Defence and Security Forces.“I am motivated, I know that things will change, they will not be as they have always been since 1992, there is a huge effort that we are trying to make, there is no secret whatsoever,” added Afonso Dhlakama.The Renamo leader said the extension of the suspension of the confrontations with the Mozambican Defence and Security Forces (FDS) results from the telephone conversations he has been holding with Mozambican head of state, Filipe Nyusi.“I was always saying that if everything went well, if the Government, the President of the Republic, my brother [Filipe] Nyusi, corresponded, I could give the truce without a deadline,” stressed the president of the main opposition party.Mozambican Defence and Security Forces and the armed wing of the main opposition party were engaged in clashes in the centre and north of the country in 2016 until the first truce announced by Dhlakama in December.The war has killed an unknown number of people, with attacks on buses, trains and other civilian targets, sank the economy and sparked a refugee crisis.Renamo and Frelimo, the ruling party, exchanged mutual accusations of political persecution and assassination.The clashes erupted after Renamo refused to accept the results of the 2014 general election, demanding to rule in six provinces where it claims victory in the ballot.It is in this sequence that the decentralisation of the State is now at the negotiating table between Dhlakama and President Nyusi – along with the depoliticisation of the FDS and the disarmament of the armed wing of the opposition and their reintegration into civilian life or integration into the army, police and information services of State.