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02 April 2013

Mott MacDonald is reducing poverty in Mozambique

Mott MacDonald is the manager of a €2.5 million technical assistance project for a local economic development programme in Mozambique that will reduce poverty and improve living conditions for people in rural areas. The European Union and Government of Mozambique financed ‘Programa de Desenvolvimento Economico Local’ (ProDEL), which totals €32.5 million, will create income and employment opportunities by promoting economic activities at local level and facilitating small scale economic infrastructure.

The consultancy will support the provincial authorities of Gaza, Inhambane and Sofala to manage and plan a €30 million grant fund. The project will be implemented in close co-ordination with the National Directorate for the Promotion of Rural Development.

Around 70% of Mozambique’s population lives in rural areas. The country remains one of the poorest in the world, with 54% of people living below the poverty line. Farming and fishing are the main sources of income for 80% of the rural population. In 2011, the Government of Mozambique launched its second Poverty Reduction Action Plan, focusing on economic growth by increasing the productivity of the agricultural and fisheries sectors. Decentralisation, agriculture and rural development are the key elements of the plan.

ProDEL is a component of the Action Plan and will operate within the framework of the decentralisation process, in close co-ordination with other initiatives providing institutional support to local authorities. It will build partnerships between economic stakeholders, including production and service companies, private investors, financial institutions, local authorities, public institutions and farmers.

Mott MacDonald’s project director Geert van Boekel said: “We expect to bring about socioeconomic change as a consequence of better planning and better financial management. However, an immediate objective is to bring about an improvement in the working and living conditions of the rural population in the pilot provinces by promoting their involvement in competitive value chains. Mott MacDonald’s involvement in Mozambique spans many years, with a portfolio ranging from social and governance projects to water supply and infrastructure.”

The ProDEL project will run from 2013 to 2017.


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