Mozambique - Country Portrait

  • Area: 799,380 square kilometers
  • Population (2012): 25.2 million 
  • Official language: Portuguese 
  • Independent: since 1975 
  • Capital: Maputo 
  • Form of government: Presidential system, Constitution from 2004 
  • Average life expectancy (2012):  50.7 
  • Percentage of rural population (2012):  68.5 %
  • Illiteracy rate(2012): 55,1% 
  • Top 3 export goods: Aluminum, electricity, natural gas  
  • Number of "Cotton made in Africa" farmers (2013):  95,300
  • Average family size of a cotton farmer: 4.4 people
  • Mozambique is known for: 2500 km of coastline

Mosambik ZoomMozambique has a predominantly small rural society that is made up of many population groups. While the majority of the population lives in rural areas, the capital Maputo is one of the fastest growing cities in Africa, in which an urban lifestyle is evolving and in which European and African influences mix heavily. It has a thriving lively cultural scene.

Located on the southeast coast of Africa, Mozambique stretches from Tanzania to Maputo to the border with South Africa and Swaziland. It borders Zimbabwe, Zambia and Malawi to the west. The east coast lies opposite the island of Madagascar. The largest river of the region, the Zambezi, flows into the "Mozambique Channel" in the Indian Ocean. 

Despite attempts at achieving economic stabilization in the late 1980s, the country ranked 185 out of 187 on the Human Development Index (HDI) in the Human Development Report (HDR) of the United Nations. Approximately 60 percent of the population live in extreme poverty.  HIV/AIDS, which affects 11 percent of the population, frequent droughts, and crop failures are the main factors why the country occupies one of the last spots on the prosperity index. 

Thanks to a high enrollment rate, Mozambique has indeed recorded substantial successes in education, nevertheless, the education sector is insufficiently developed; the rate of students who earn a degree is low which means that over half of Mozambicans cannot read, write, or count.

About 80 percent of the population of Mozambique works in agriculture and mainly practice subsistence farming to meet their needs for basic foodstuffs. The main agricultural products are cotton, cashew nuts, sugar, sisal, copra, and tea as well as shrimp and crayfish. The agricultural sector contributes about 30 percent to the gross domestic product (GDP). The country is heavily dependent on development aid. Only half of the population has access to adequate drinking water. Here is where CmiA and its partners from the public and private sector play a role: Boreholes are built to improve the water supply and hygiene in remote cotton production areas in Mozambique .

Sources: Human Development Report 2013 (UN); The World Fact Book 2014; Auswärtiges Amt 2013; World Development Indicators 2014; 2010-2014 Bundesministerium für wirtschaftliche Zusammenarbeit und Entwicklung (BMZ) Digitale Kommunikation Referat L 5.

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Tel.: +49 (0)40 - 2576 - 755 - 00

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