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Dutch foreign minister Bert Koenders said that the next two weeks will be decisive in his country’s deciding whether or not to resume direct support for the Mozambican state budget this year.
Speaking to journalists in The Hague at the end of a meeting with Mozambican president Filipe Nyusi, Koenders said he hoped for in a positive outcome, judging by the encouraging news that he had been receiving on Mozambique both in relation to debts and the peace process.
“Direct budget support is something that could happen soon, because as you know we have very good relations with Mozambique and the news we have received about the situation in the country is very positive,” Koenders said, stressing the importance of the independent audit report on the debts that led cooperation partners to suspend support.
“We understand that the (audit) process is well under way, so we are working on resuming government-to-government cooperation,” he explained.
Speaking about his talks with the Mozambican president, Koenders said that they addressed economic inclusion and small and medium-sized enterprises due to their high potential for job creation, in addition to projects such as the Rovuma gas liquefaction process (GTL) to be implemented by the Anglo-Dutch multinational Shell.
“We are working on many projects, such as the GTL, ports and maritime logistics, resilience to climate change and agriculture, and we are also addressing the resumption of support for health projects in Mozambique,” Koenders said.
Mozambican minister of foreign affairs and cooperation Oldemiro Baloi said that “while we are under the suspension of economic support, there are countries like the Netherlands who, by indirect means, namely NGOs, are releasing some means that we call palliative measures because the normal is the relationship between states without intermediaries of this nature although the complementary role that these organisations play is recognised”.
In addition to meeting the Netherlands foreign minister, President Nyusi yesterday visited a shipyard in Rotterdam and Shell’s technology centre in Amsterdam and held a meeting with around 50 Mozambican businesspeople in his entourage.
By Almiro MaziveSource: AIM Moçambique
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