Intelligent news from Mozambique

Zitamar Daily Briefing, 18 December 2017

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Welcome to Zitamar’s daily Mozambique briefing for 18 December, 2017.

The latest from Zitamar News:

Mozambique seeks private investor to revive Chokwe Agro-Industrial Complex
The facility, which opened in 2015, couldn’t survive two bad harvests – but is hoping for a fresh start with a new investor.

Anadarko signs up Tohoku Electric for Mozambique LNG – report
A Japanese power company has signed a preliminary agreement to buy a small volume of LNG from the Rovuma Basin project.

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The best of the rest:

Mozambique police reaffirm support for Montepuez Ruby Mining (Notícias)
The new chief of Mozambique’s police force, Bernardino Rafael, visited Montepuez in Cabo Delgado to confirm his force’s support for the operations of Montepuez Ruby Mining, the local subsidiary of South African-owned mining company Gemfields. The police have come in for criticism for the way they and private security have cracked down on illegal artisanal mining on MRM’s concessions.
Rubies are a growing source of foreign exchange for Mozambique – and their local partners are typically very well connected in the upper echelons of Frelimo.

Shell negotiating for Palma site with access to the sea (Noticias)
Anglo-Dutch oil major Shell is negotiating with the Mozambique government for a site in the LNG park in Palma that will give it access to the sea, country head Alex Battaglia told journalists in Cabo Delgado province after a meeting with the province’s new governor, Julio Parruque. The company is planning a gas-to-liquids plant in Palma and an 80 MW power plant.
Gaining access to the sea is not only important for Shell, but for Yara’s planned fertiliser plant – and the government itself, which wants to build a commercial port at Palma. But if Mozambique wants to build a viable, large-scale downstream gas industry it will need to provide assurances to investors not only on sea access, but also the price domestic gas can be delivered – and when.

Government quadruples state TV and radio budget in election year (@Verdade)
The Mozambican government allocated over a billion meticais in subsidies for Rádio Moçambique (RM) e Televisão de Moçambique (TVM) in the 2018 budget that was approved by parliament last week – four times more than the broadcasters got from the government last year. @Verdade says they’re being ‘reinforced’ ahead of two years of elections at the local and national level.
The state broadcasters remain the principal source of information for large parts of the country which don’t have access to independent media – though that is changing as smartphones become more widespread.

Tax authority confirms receipt of $352m Eni-Exxon CGT (Mediafax)
Mozambique’s tax authority, the Autoridade Tributária de Moçambique (AT), confirmed on Friday it had received the $352 million in capital gains tax payable by Eni following the sale of half its stake in Offshore Area 4 to ExxonMobil.

433 small businesses shut up shop in Sofala this year (CanalMoz)
433 micro and small businesses closed their doors in Sofala this year, with the loss of 361 jobs, CanalMoz reports today.
It’s been a tough year or two, with government cutting spending (in some areas), poor and unpredictable harvests, and tight monetary policy putting the squeeze on small-scale entrepreneurs.

EU gives €39.5m in project aid to Mozambique (Correio da Manhã, AIM)
The European Union has given Mozambique €39.5m out of the EU’s 11th European Development Fund, to help projects in sectors including access to energy, management of public finances, and ‘reinforcing citizenship’.
The EU is among donors who withdrew budget support for Mozambique’s government in the wake of the revelation of hidden debts.

Agenda

  • Today: The start of the trial of Zófimo Muiuane, accused of murdering his wife, Valentina Guebuza, daughter of former president Armando Guebuza
  • Today: Start of urban rail and bus service Metro-Bus, between downtown Maputo, Matola, and Marracuene
  • Wednesday: Bank of Mozambique Monetary Policy Committee to make its next decision

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