Angola: Mozambique and Angola Call for Increased Trade

Maputo — The Mozambican and Angolan governments on Friday declared their interest in increasing trade between the two countries, and stepping up the exchange of experiences in the exploitation of hydrocarbons.

This desire was expressed during a meeting in Maputo between Mozambican Foreign Minister Jose Pacheco and his Angolan counterpart, Manuel Augusto.

In declarations to reporters. Pacheco said that Mozambique hopes to learn from the Angolan experience in hydrocarbon exploration, and would like to see Angolan companies doing business with Mozambicans.

"There are areas in which Angola is advanced and we have every interest in learning from the experience of our Angolan brothers.

Manuel Augusto said that his country not only desires to step up its trade with Mozambique, but hopes to learn from the Mozambican municipal elections, held on 10 October.

"The case of Mozambique inspires Angola", he said, "since we are currently preparing to hold our own municipal elections in 2020. We have to drink from the experience of Mozambique in order to carry out a process which is as close as possible to that of Mozambique, in terms of transparency, justice and inclusive participation".

Augusto also admitted that corruption has been a heavy burden for Angola. He said the Angolan people could be enjoying a better standard of living were it not for the scourge of corruption.

"The struggle against corruption will continue, even though it looks like a war", he said. It looked like a battle inside the ruling MPLA, and he admitted that the MPLA has only itself to blame for the current situation.

There was nobody else to blame, since the MPLA had been governing the country since independence in 1975.

"The MPLA is ruling the country", he said. "Where is it going to complain about corruption? There isn't anywhere else. So the MPLA itself must reverse the scenario".

He recognised it was difficult since it looked like a struggle inside the MPLA. Nonetheless, the MPLA must be prepared to continue the anti-corruption offensive, he stressed, "even if this means that some high ranking leaders are affected".

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