Nyusi pledges to work for lasting peace

Maputo (AIM) – Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi on Wednesday once again reaffirmed his willingness to meet with Afonso Dhlakama, leader of the Renamo rebels, and his determination to guarantee “an effective and lasting peace”.

Source: Nyusi pledges to work for lasting peace – The Zimbabwean 23.12.2016

Speaking at the traditional end-of-year reception in the Presidential gardens, Nyusi, in a clear reference to Renamo, attacked those Mozambicans “who advocate a patriotism based on the destruction of what was collectively built”.

2016 had been a difficult year which had obliged the government “to take difficult monetary and fiscal measures, which were necessary to alter the prevailing situation”. Nyusi believed these measures were taking effect, as could be seen in a recovery in the exchange rate of the national currency, the metical, and he predicted a slowdown in the rate of inflation in 2017.

“Our institutions are continuing to function, and we have built economic and social infrastructures that are the cornerstone for compliance with the government’s programme”, he said. “From that we conclude that the state of the nation stands firm” (a quotation from his State of the Nation address delivered in parliament on Monday).

There are hopes for financial and social stability next year but “this will require a great deal of work and unity from all of us”.

“Difficult and complex moments such as the ones we are living through require us to take courageous, daring and structuring decisions, which are not always well understood”, he added.

The government had decided to concentrate investment in four areas that could have a multiplier effect on the economy and act as catalysts. These were agriculture and agro-processing, tourism, the development of infrastructures, and energy. In particular, the President said, the 2016/2017 agricultural campaign should be “a moment of mobilization at all levels – of economic agents, communities, producers and society in general, setting production targets that will contribute to our country becoming self-sufficient in basic foodstuffs and generating surpluses for export”.

Nyusi expected the Mozambican economy to return to high levels of growth. He predicted an economic growth rate of seven per cent as from 2018, rising to nine per cent in 2023, when the production and export of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the far north of the country should be under way.

“The Mozambican people have already defeated more difficult and complicated challenges”, he said, “because it always acted with confidence in itself and with determination. That is how we should continue”.

“Let us work to keep the country peaceful and stable,  on the path of progress, consolidating democracy and the institutions of the state, guaranteeing freedom of creation and of expression, so that the construction of social well-being may be inclusive and the work of all of us”, urged Nyusi.