Maputo — The Mozambican government on Monday signed a financing agreement with the Tanzania-based Investment Climate Facility (ICF), under which the ICF will undertake a project known as the “Integrated Platform for Providing Services to Citizens”.
The agreement was signed in Maputo by the Minister of Industry and Trade, Armando Inroga, and by the ICF Executive Director, Omari Issa.
The ICF is a body which aims to improve the business environment in African countries. The Mozambique project is centred on the licensing and promotion of economic activities, and basic services for citizens. It is budgeted at 5.3 million US dollars – 2.6 million from the government and 2.7 million from the ICF.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Inroga said that the project rests on an electronic system which will induce the integration of public services involved in the licensing of economic activities and promote improvements in service delivery.
The Minister said the project should lead to the creation of an “Integrated System for the Provision of Business Services”, and to the modernisation and efficiency of public services based on the use of information and communication technologies.
The project is based on the Tourism Ministry’s “Single Tourism Window”, which began in 2009. The government intends to expand this experience to areas such as commercial and industrial licensing; simplified licensing; the attribution of tax identification numbers; and company registration.
The ICF director stressed there is a direct relationship between facilitating the start-up of businesses and job creation.
“If it costs less to start a business, and managing a business becomes easier, then many people who operate today without being formally registered will be encouraged to register, since when they register and enter the formal economy they will be able to access funding, attract skilled labour and expand their business”, Issa claimed.
He said the project will be very important for small and medium companies who have a very limited capacity to manage their business and to comply with all the paperwork demanded by state institutions.
“Instead of spending a lot of time complying with bureaucratic procedures, they will be able to spend the time managing their businesses and becoming more competitive, able to expand and to employ more people”, he stressed.