Mozambican Prime Minister Adriano Maleiane has given a resounding endorsement of the African Development Bank’s (www.AfDB.org) development strategy in his country. Receiving the Bank’s vice president for regional development, integration and business delivery, Marie-Laure Akin-Olugbade in his office on Thursday, Maleiane complimented the African Development Bank for what he said was its unique approach to development and partnership, which went beyond financing, to humanize its initiatives.
Akin-Olugbade’s courtesy call on the prime minister is part of a six-day official visit to Mozambique. Accompanying her were the group’s Director General for Southern Africa, Leïla Mokaddem and Country Manager for Mozambique, Cesar Augusto Mba Abogo.
Akin-Olugbade commended the Mozambican government for implementing various reforms that have helped to maintain the country’s stability, and for showing “strong resilience in the face of such exogenous shocks as climate change, Covid-19, conflict and terrorism.”
Earlier on Thursday, Akin-Olugbade and her team met with development partners and some members of the diplomatic corps in Maputo to discuss collaborative support to Mozambique. Partners included representatives from the World Bank, the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), the European Union, the United Kingdom, Spain, Sweden, KfW, The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) participated in the meeting.
The African Development Bank team also held meetings with private sector groups as well as the government. Discussions with Economy and Finance Minister Max Elias Tonela on Wednesday focused on the implementation of the recently approved African Development Bank Country Strategy for Mozambique for the period 2023-2028.
Tonela welcomed the new country strategy paper and its alignment with the Mozambican government’s medium and long-term strategies for the economy and private sector development. He said both strategies focused on the creation of jobs and sustained social development.
Tonela noted: “This strategy is poised to strongly support Mozambique in implementing crucial economic reforms, enabling the country to realize its immense potential and achieve a positive economic outlook. It will serve as a robust framework in our collaboration for driving tangible growth and capitalizing on the abundant opportunities that lie ahead.”
African Development Bank Country Manager Abogo said: “With this Country
Strategy Paper, we are aiming to maintain our hallmark as a strategic partner of reference for both the Government of Mozambique and other Development Partners who, like the African Development Bank, support this country in facing the challenge of achieving inclusive and sustainable growth.”
One of the African Development Bank-funded projects that the team visited was Agricultural Value-Chain and Youth Empowerment Project. It is a project that supports young farmers and their communities by providing horticulture, irrigation and livestock-related infrastructure. Following the visit, Akin-Olugbade remarked that peace and security are essential for sustainable economic development.
She said: “Conflict and violence undermine progress and have long-term adverse impacts. Addressing these issues is paramount for fostering inclusive growth and sustainable development.”
The African Development Bank’s Regional Development, Integration and Business Delivery complex—which Akin-Olugbade manages—oversees the Bank’s $30 billion portfolio and lending across its five regional hubs. It provides strategic leadership on the Bank’s work on fragility and regional integration.
Mokaddem said the visit was an opportune time to recognize the significant position Mozambique holds in the Bank’s ongoing innovative initiatives.
She said: “We have such examples as the [Bank’s] Security Indexed Investment Bond, the Dakar 2 Food Summit, and support to Zimbabwe’s debt arrears clearance, through the ongoing structured dialogue platform with the country’s creditors and development partners.” She added that this is a process being facilitated by Mozambique’s former president Joaquim Chissano.
The African Development Bank has been actively engaged in Mozambique for more than 45 years, with investments in the country of up to $3.6 billion. It has allocated more than half of this funding in just the past decade.
Mozambique is a key focus of the African Development Bank’s various flagship initiatives for Africa’s transformation, one of them being its Special Agro-Industrial Processing Zones program.
The African Development Bank’s current country portfolio for Mozambique is worth $1.21 billion and is the second largest in the southern region. It comprises 29 projects across energy, transport, agriculture, social and economic governance sectors.
The Bank vice president and her team are visiting Mozambique through Friday, 7 July.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of African Development Bank Group (AfDB).
Communication and External Relations Department