Mozambique: New Hospital Planned for Nampula

Maputo — Work on building a new reference hospital in the northern Mozambican province of Nampula is due to begin in November, under an agreement signed in the southern city of Matola on Thursday.

The hospital will belong to the Ministry of Health and the charitable institution "Our Children Our Future" (INCF). Funding for the new hospital, budgeted at 123 million euros (about 175 million US dollars) will be mobilised by the South African based group BluPearl investments.

These three bodies signed the Thursday agreement to build a modern hospital in Nampula that will benefit an estimated population of six million people, living in the provinces of Nampula, Zambezia, Niassa and Cabo Delgado. It will also operate as a "hospital-school" for students from the country's medical faculties.

Speaking at the ceremony, Health Minister Alexandre Manguele said this would be a hospital of "high quality and state of the art technology". It would reduce the need, still felt by many Mozambicans, to seek medical treatment outside the country.

A source in the office of the First Lady, Maria de Luz Guebuza, who is the patron of the INCF, said funding for the construction would not take the form of either a loan or a grant.

"Payment will be by means of joint management of the investors for 15 years, after which the hospital will pass into the ownership of the INCF and the Ministry", said the source.

The managing director of BluPearl, Jason Pedersen, told AIM that Mozambique is one of the key countries for the investment of this group, which has interests in agriculture and mining as well as in health care and other humanitarian areas.

Pedersen guaranteed that work on the hospital will begin in November and it will take two years to complete.

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