Intelligent news from Mozambique

Zitamar Daily Briefing, 4 June 2018

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Welcome to Zitamar’s daily Mozambique briefing for 4 June, 2018.

Agenda

  • Today: IMF presents its Mozambique and Sub-Saharan Africa economic outlook, at the Hotel Polana in Maputo
  • Today: Second day of a five-day Mozambique investment roadshow in Lisbon and Porto, Portugal

The latest from Zitamar News:

Dispute brewing between Zimbabwe and Mozambique over fuel depot plan
Zimbabwe says the plan could violate an agreement not to undermine the existing fuel pipeline between the two countries

Mozambique logging licence delays will push investment elsewhere, Obtala warns
Licences for the 2018 wood cutting season, which were supposed to be issued at the beginning of April, have still not been released

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The best of the rest:

  • Nine terror suspects killed by police and vigilantes in Cabo Delgado
  • PM intervenes to save jobs of TV chiefs suspended over terror report blunder
  • 24-hour Ressano Garcia border put back to August
  • GDP grew 4.7% – or 3.2% – in Q1 2018
  • Triton to develop $75m Mozambique graphite project

Nine terror suspects killed by police and vigilantes in Cabo Delgado (O País)
Nine men suspected of having carried out beheadings in Cabo Delgado last week were killed on Friday by a group of police and local vigilantes, after they were discovered cooking dinner in the middle of the bush. Among their possessions were a Kalashnikov rifle, machetes, and a Tanzanian passport.
So far the police have presented no evidence that these men actually were terrorists – or that it was impossible to take them alive. This approach to ‘law and order’ can only feed further discontent among marginalised communities in Cabo Delgado.

PM intervenes to save jobs of TV chiefs suspended over terror report blunder (MediaFax, CanalMoz)
The chairman of state television broadcaster TVM, Armando Inroga, suspended the director of information and the head of news on Thursday after they broadcast a five-month-old video, claiming it was terrorists taking responsibility for the recent beheadings in Palma. However, according to MediaFax, Prime Minister Carlos Agostinho do Rosário intervened to insist the suspensions be lifted.
There are two big takeaways from this incident, neither of which are surprising: the state-owned media are as big culprits as anyone in mis-informing the Mozambican people; and they have no independence from government, something which is particularly alarming as we enter this election cycle.

24-hour Ressano Garcia border put back to August (Rádio Moçambique, AIM, Lusa)
The border with South Africa at Ressano Garcia, or Lebombo on the South African side, will now start opening 24 hours a day in August, having missed the previous deadline of April, according to Ester Tondo, the Mozambican consul-general in the neighbouring South African provinces of Mpumalanga and Limpopo.

GDP grew 4.7% – or 3.2% – in Q1 2018 (Rádio Moçambique, O País)
Radio Moçambique says Mozambique’s GDP grew 4.7% in the first three months of the year, while O País says 3.2%.
The homepage of statistics institute INE says it’s 3.2% – but click through and you’ll find they haven’t published detailed quarterly statistics since Q2 2017, and have never done so regularly and systematically. It’s a serious failing which hampers investment planning by both the public and private sectors.

Triton to develop $75m Mozambique graphite project (Mining Weekly)
The board of Triton Minerals has given its formal approval to move ahead with its graphite mining project at Ancuabe, Cabo Delgado. Triton said on Friday that project construction was expected to start in the second half of 2018, subject to final approvals and financing, with first graphite production targeted for the second half of 2019.

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