8 January 2019

Mozambique: The Banker Bros Who Bankrupted Mozambique

Photo: VOAPortugues
Mozambique's former finance minister Manuel Chang appears in court during an extradition hearing in Johannesburg.
analysis

In December 2018, the US Department of Justice indicted three former Credit Suisse bankers for their role in bringing Mozambique's economy to its knees. State-owned entities drowning in billions of dollars in debt, bloated infrastructure projects, kickbacks paid into UAE bank accounts, and government guarantees imperilling the entire economy: if any of this sounds familiar, keep reading.

"50 million chickens."

This is how kickbacks, destined for Mozambican government officials, were described by one of the co-conspirators in an international corruption scandal that centred on a $2-billion project to build shipyards and tuna trawlers in Mozambique.

Make no mistake though, the kickbacks would not be paid in poultry. Instead, $50-million in hard currency would be deposited into a series of bank accounts in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Spain.

This is according to the US Department of Justice which filed an indictment in December 2018 in a court in New York.

It was this indictment which led South African police to arrest Manuel Chang, the former finance minister of Mozambique, at OR Tambo International Airport on Sunday 30 December. Chang was on his way to Dubai when he was...

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