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On 29th November 2021 United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) in Mozambique with support from the Office of the United Nations Resident Coordinator in Mozambique organized a Round Table under the theme : "Promoting economic diversification and sustainable livelihoods through the circular economy" as a contribution to the implementation of the National Industrialization Policy (PRONAI) and the National Development Strategy (ENDE).

The Round table focused on the role of the local, circular economy and blue economy local value chains in reducing economic vulnerability (as per the theme of UNCTAD 15), increasing economic diversification and promoting sustainable livelihoods, aligned to the UNSDCF Strategic Priorities 2 and 3, the National Industrialization Strategy, and the National Development Strategy.

“UNIDO is engaged in increasing knowledge about the potential of the circular economy as a way to promote economic diversification and sustainable livelihoods that will contribute to the design of the National Development Strategy (ENDE) and the implementation of the National Industrialization Policy (PRONAI)”. Mr. Jaime Comiche, UNIDO Country Representative


It should be noted that after decades of high GDP growth averaging 7% per annum up to 2014, Mozambique’s economy has in the recent years slowed down to rates of GDP growth below population growth. As a result, GDP per capita has been falling for the last few years. Maputo City alone saw a 38.1 percent drop in per capita spending. In addition, the country has also regressed in terms of the Human Development Index, becoming the 181st least developed country among the 190 countries listed by the Human Development Index. Besides poor industrialization, factors such as conflict, natural and man-made disasters, and the Covid-19 pandemic, among others, have also contributed to the economic deterioration.

This dramatic decline in economic resilience combined with the increasing climate-related risks further heighten Mozambique’s vulnerability calling for an urgent strategic, whole-of-Government and whole-of-society effort from all economic and social agents to bounce beyond its current vulnerability building economic diversification and resilience.

Against this backdrop, in late September 2021 the President of the Republic launched the consultation process for the revision of the National Development Strategy (ENDE), the apex of national planning and budgeting architecture.

The revision of the ENDE constitutes and opportunity to support the consultation process hosted by Ministry of Economy and Finance and to support the Ministry of Industry and Trade and Business Associations (particularly those representing MSMEs, Women and Youth Entrepreneurs) to ensure their voices are heard so that ENDE places a much-needed emphasizes on building sustainable livelihoods and enhancing productive capacities in line with the focus of UNCTAD 15, reducing inequalities and vulnerability towards enhanced productive capacities.

“(Programa Nacional Industrializar Moçambique) PRONAI an embodiment of the ENDE, is one of the national programs that foresees, within a period of approximately 10 years, the promotion of 293 industrial development projects which intends to industrialize the country and promote thousands of jobs for Mozambicans”. Cerina Musa, representative of the Ministry of Industry and Commerce


It was also highlighted that certain business practices and broad strategies including reusing, repairing, remanufacturing and recycling s are necessary for reaching a circular economy "A circular economy returns products to the economy and maintains the value of each product as long as possible" - Ms. Nilgüen Tas, UNIDO - United Nations Industrial Development Organization Deputy Director, Department of Environment

The event was attended by participants from institutions and organizations relevant to the diversification of the economy, such as: The Ministries of Industry and Trade, Agriculture and Rural Development Lands and Environment, Energy and Mineral Resources, Economy and Finance; business associations, including but not limited to CTA, ACIS, IMO, and small-scale producer associations, ensuring through these that MSMEs, gender and youth representation is ensured.

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The coming into force of the regulations is timely! It is an instrument that will change the energy sector as the whole society is awakening and realizing the potential of energy for the whole country and at the same time a great incentive for the private sector in terms of boosting the generation and distribution of energy” - Vicente Matsinhe, National Coordinator, TSE4ALLM project


This regulation was published on December 10th after being formally approved in Sept 14th by the board of ministers and according to the rules it will be enter into force 45 days after publication. The regulation was developed as a response to strengthen the current legal framework of the energy sector to accelerate access to energy in off-grid areas with a particular emphasis of boosting productive uses of energy and related socio-economic development across the country.


Undertakings that fall under the investment regime defined by this regulation include initiatives aimed at improving access to energy in off-grid areas, which create and use virtual physical infrastructure or systems, installations, equipment, software and other accessory components, essential for access to energy, catalysts for the development and exploitation of industry, commerce, fisheries, agriculture, and other sectors of activity.


Going forward and as a result of the enforcement of this regulation, the private sector will be more attracted to invest in renewable energy particularly in mini-grids which have now been segmented and classified according their respective installed capacities as follows:

a.Category 1: Minigrids with installed capacity ranging from 1.001 MW – 10 MW
b.Category 2: Minigrids with installed capacity ranging from 151kW – 1 MW
c.Category 3: Minigrids with installed capacity up to 150kW


Under the TSE4ALLM project, given that the project is targeting small to medium size installations, it is expected that most of the systems will fall under category 3 which are exempt from the obligation to obtain the establishment and exploration licenses, without prejudice to any of the duties of the investor pertaining system operation and maintenance and for the respect of the principles and standards of quality, safety and reliability as well as of the respective inspection by the Regulatory Authority of Energy (ARENE).

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Mozambique has agro-economic conditions for the cultivation of various crops. The district of Bilene in the province of Gaza has conditions for the cultivation of macadamia, cashew, rice, corn, beans and vegetables. Macadamia and cashew nuts have a potential external market, existing at the level of companies that are dedicated to process these nuts for export.

 

There is currently a shortage of macadamia and cashew supply, and this project by SUPER KWICK seeks to increase the availability of raw products by promoting their cultivation. At the planting stage, these crops require a lot of water for irrigation.

 

The use of renewable energy to pump water for distribution to the agricultural fields is an opportunity to ensure the sustainability of the crop.


Besides the promotion of crops for export, the project also seeks to promote the production of crops for domestic consumption, since the country still cannot meet its needs in terms of vegetables and cereals, hence resorting to importing rice from Asian countries and vegetables from neighboring South Africa.

 

With the funds received through the BCI SUPER credit line, SUPER KWICK Lda will install a solar system capable of generating 2515W of power to enable the pumping of water for irrigation of the macadamia, cashew, rice, bean crops farms covering an area of 30 ha.“The use of solar energy for water pumping offers an opportunity to increase the productivity of farmers in the Bilene region, who currently practice rain fed agriculture that depends solely on rainfall”. Aldo Gomes dos Santos Baúque, general manager, SUPER KWICK Lda.

 

The implementation of this project will bring benefits to the communities of Mhate and Chilengue in Bilene district as it will serve as a bench mark for their migration from rain-fed agriculture to solar powered irrigation agriculture where production occurs all year round due to the permanent availability of water. The practice of solar-powered irrigation based agriculture will impact on the food security of the communities as well as increase their income and production surplus for commercial purposes.

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In November 2021 Tsangano Agrifarms, an agribusiness company from Tete province received funding under the auspices of the BCI SUPER credit line implemented by BCI bank in partnership with UNIDO and FUNAE with funding from the Global Environment Facility (GEF). Tsangano Agrifarms is an agricultural production, agro-livestock, and agro-processing company, owner of 101 Hectares of land in the Province of Tete, Tsangano District, in Chinvano locality.


Currently the project is involved in the production, processing and commercialization of quality agricultural products using the most modern technologies and production processes available in the district and at the country level.

 

Like other agricultural practices in Mozambique, the Tsangano Agrifarms activities depend on the increasingly dwindling water resources from the nearby rivers and rainy seasons to irrigate the farms and cater for poultry and animal husbandry.

 

“Due to climate change, we do not have abundant water for our own consumption and the irrigation of our fields. We have a nearby river, Rio Nhacuawa that flows only in the rainy season and whose water flow tends to reduce in the months of April-May” –Lamented a Tsangano Agrifarms staff member


In order not to suspend the agricultural activities due to lack of water, the company resorted to pumping water from Liveranje River, which is 1.8km away. However, this involves a lot of expenditures as regards to the acquisition of motor pumps and piping of large capacities of water which makes it more expensive for their level of production.


“Despite the fact the river Liveranje supplies water for longer periods compared to other rivers, it is difficult to practice agriculture on the banks of the river due to the steep slopes. Besides, the river is prone to soil erosion on its banks as a result of intensive agricultural activities”—Informed the Tsangano Agrifarms staff member

 

With the support of the BCI SUPER credit line, Tsangano Agrifarms intends to use a photovoltaic system to harness the sun's energy to pump water to irrigate crops, power agricultural machinery and equipment, provide light, heat, and ventilation to farm buildings, haylofts, pigsties, livestock and energy for cooling in the horticultural processing factory and freezing in the abattoir chamber. Irrefutably, the operating costs of agriculture and horticulture farms will go down considerably compared to the fossil fuel powered equipment that is currently in use.

 

“The solar strategy will help us increase efficiency and self-reliance. Solar technology will offer us an opportunity to stabilize our energy costs. Some solar strategies involve an upfront investment, but when those costs are recovered, the energy is free”. Informed the company’s CEO

 

In addition, the photovoltaic systems also require much less maintenance compared to traditional agricultural energy sources and are very efficient. Greenhouse nurseries, for example, will allow crops to grow all year round. PV panels will also be able to dry crops faster and more consistently compared to other methods.

 

The Tsangano Agrifarms photovoltaic system with funding from the BCI SUPER credit line will enable crop production throughout the year, maize grinding benefiting 250 families (equivalent to 600-800kg of flour per day), and increase poultry and piggery production from the current 79 to 600.

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Mozambique joined other world governments at the 2021 United Nations 26th Climate Change Conference, more commonly referred to as COP26, held at the SEC Centre in Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom, from 31 October to 13 November 2021
Speaking at the United Nations Conference, the Prime Minister of Mozambique Carlos Agostinho do Rosário committed the country to achieving 62% of energy from renewable resources by 2030.

One of the matters under discussion is the transition away from fossil fuels. Under the Paris Agreement coal should cease to be used as a fuel by 2050. Mozambique possesses major coal deposits, and just two decades ago, it was expected that coal would be a major driver of Mozambican development.
“It is a priority for Mozambique to implement an energy transition program based on a diversified matrix, with cleaner and more environmentally friendly sources, in line with our country’s development programs,” the prime minister said, indicating investment in hydroelectric, solar and wind power.

However, transitioning away from energy based on fossil sources entails costs, and must be a phased process.
“Mozambique prefers an energy transition to cleaner and more environmentally friendly energies that is gradual and phased, in order to minimize the impact on the process of economic development in our country,” explained the Prime Minister.
In this sense, the country intends to make the energy transition process via natural gas, even though it is considered non-environmentally friendly, a decision influenced by the discoveries of great qualities of this resource in the national territory.

“Mozambique proposes to use natural gas as a transition to cleaner energy sources,” and with that, Carlos Agostinho do Rosário guaranteed that the country will do everything to “reach, by the year 2030, the levels of 62% of the contribution of renewable energies in the national energy matrix within the scope of the Sustainable Development Goals”.

Reference: https://allafrica.com/stories/202111120052.html