Mozambique: Nyusi Pledges to Improve Business Environment

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Maputo — Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi on Tuesday pledged that his government will continue to take measures to improve the business environment.

Speaking at the UK-Africa Investment Summit in London, at a round table on agriculture, Nyusi stressed that farming is basic for Mozambique's development. Cited by Radio Mozambique, he said that Mozambique could, for example, "inundate the United Kingdom with sugar, and with organic sugar, if necessary".

Such exports could begin next year - but only if there is a guaranteed market. "We just need the certainty that we will have a market", said Nyusi. "I spoke of sugar, but I could give other examples".

He added that the Mozambican government intends to invest in agriculture a percentage of the revenue that the country will eventually obtain from hydrocarbon exports.

A statement issued by the British government pledged scaling up support for agriculture with funding of up to 40 million pounds (about 52 million US dollars) over the next five years. This funding, the statement said, "will improve private sector participation in selected areas in agriculture to promote greater climate resilience as well as stimulate sectoral growth and transformation of Mozambique's economy".

There will also be, it added, a new programme, costed at up to 22 million pounds "to increase domestic and business energy access through private sector innovation and investment".

The UK government also intends "to uplift significantly work on women's economic empowerment with funding up to two million pounds to expand and extend work in Mozambique and scale out to other countries in the region including strengthening relations with partners from the public sector, civil society and private sector".

A further promise in the statement was that the UK will assist the southern African region "to increase intra-African trade flows, reduce barriers to trade and increase investment (funding of up to 200 million pounds over seven years)"

It added that "In the future, the UK will aim to deepen these agreements to make them even better for business, ensuring they reflect the ambitions of African partners to increase trade with the UK in high-value services, harnessing the internet and new technologies".

The Commonwealth Development Corporation (CDC) group, which is a British development finance institution, now has over 2.4 billion pounds invested in over 600 businesses in Africa, which employ over 370,000 people. The government statement said the CDC announced 300 million pounds of new investment at the summit "and plans to invest a further two billion pounds into Africa by 2022".

During the summit, the statement added, "the UK set out its ambition to increase trade and investment links with Africa. This means building a stronger, long-term relationship with African countries - based on trade, investment, shared values and mutual interest".

It insisted that the UK "wants to be the investment partner of choice for Africa and will continue to support African countries in their ambition to transform their economies".

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