MOZAMBIQUE

Date of establishment: June 25, 1975

Brief history:

  • Pre-colonial period: The territory of present-day Mozambique was inhabited by various ethnic groups, including the Maku and the Tsonga. It was influenced by Arab and Persian trade, and later by Portuguese colonial expansion.
  • 16th century: Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama arrived on the coast of Mozambique and Portuguese colonization began. The coastal areas were gradually conquered and transformed into a part of the Portuguese East India Colony.
  • 20th century: During the 20th century, Mozambican national identity began to take shape and the struggle for independence was underway.
  • 1962: Formation of the Front for the Liberation of Mozambique (FRELIMO), a movement fighting for independence.
  • 1975: The state gained independence from Portugal and became a People’s Republic. Samora Machel became the first president.
  • 1977: Declared a socialist republic and significant collectivization of the economy began.
  • 1980-1990: It was affected by a long and devastating civil war between the FRELIMO government and the anti-government rebel forces of the RENAMO movement.
  • 1986: President Samora Machel died in a plane crash and was replaced by Joaquim Chissano.
  • 1992: A peace agreement was concluded, ending the civil war.
  • 1994: The first multi-party elections were held, in which FRELIMO won.
  • After 1994: Gradually opened up to foreign investment and began economic reforms.
  • 21st century: Economic growth, mainly due to the extraction of natural resources such as oil and natural gas.

 

International abbreviation: MZ

 

Currency: Mozambican metical MZN

The Mozambican metical is further divided into smaller units called centavos. Banknotes and coins are issued by the Central Bank of Mozambique, which controls the country’s monetary policy.

 

Internet domain: .mz

 

Dialing code: +258

 

Time zone: GMT +2

 

Geography:

Mozambique has a long Atlantic Ocean coastline that stretches for almost 2 500 kilometers (1 553 miles). This coast is known for its beautiful beaches and is a popular destination for tourists.

The interior is mostly flat, but there are several mountain ranges, including the Drakensberg Mountains, which form the border with the Republic of South Africa.

It is crossed by a number of rivers, the most important of which is the Zambezi, which forms the northern border of the country. It is famous for its waterfalls, including Victoria Falls.

In the western part of the country lie several lakes, the largest of which is Niassa, also known as Lake Malawi. It is the third largest lake in Africa.

The southern part is home to the Kalahari Desert, which spans the territory of several countries. Mozambique includes several archipelagos in the Indian Ocean, among them the Bazaruto and Quirimbas archipelagos, which are popular tourist destinations.

 

Highest peak: Monte Binga 2 436 m  (7 992 feet) above sea level.

The highest peak in Mozambique is Monte Binga, which is part of the Drakensberg mountain range. It is located on the border with Zimbabwe.

 

Climate:

The coastal areas that lie on the southeastern coast of the Indian Ocean have a tropical climate with high humidity. This area is characterized by hot and humid summers and mild winters. The rainy season lasts from November to April, when it rains heavily, while the drier season is from May to October.

The interior has a rather dry and warm climate. The rainy season lasts from November to March, while the dry season comes from April to October.

The Drakensberg Mountains, located on the southern border of Mozambique, have a cooler climate with mild summers and cold winters. There may also be more precipitation in the area.

The Zambezi River Valley in the north of the country has a hot and dry climate with significant summer rains. The climate of the Mozambican islands in the Indian Ocean is tropical with milder temperatures and high humidity. The rainy season here usually coincides with the coastal areas.

 

Fauna and flora:

Mozambique is one of the last strongholds of African elephants. The country has several protected areas where these majestic creatures can be observed.

It also has a population of lions, especially in national parks and reserves. Rivers and waterways are inhabited by various species of crocodiles. The country is trying to protect endangered species of rhinoceros such as the black rhinoceros.

It is a paradise for ornithologists, it has a rich population of birds. The coastal waters are home to many species of dolphins and sharks, making the area attractive to divers and marine life lovers.

The northern part includes rainforests and tropical forests. These areas are home to many species of rare plants and trees. The interior is mainly a savannah landscape with grass and trees. There are acacias and baobabs, which are characteristic of the African landscape. Coastal areas are decorated with mangroves and other plants adapted to the saline environment.

Many indigenous tribes use local plants for medicinal purposes and ritual practices.

 

Agriculture:

The main crops grown include maize, cassava, rice, sugarcane, sesame, groundnuts and sweet potatoes. In addition, coffee, cotton, and cocoa are grown.

Some crops such as sugarcane, coffee, tea, and groundnuts are grown for export. Agriculture is dependent on the rainy season, which lasts from November to March. This period is crucial for crop growth.

Fishing is another important source of food and income for many. Despite the wealth of agricultural resources, the country faces challenges related to poverty and inequality. Many small farmers do not have access to modern farming techniques and infrastructure.

 

Extraction of raw materials:

Mozambique has significant oil and gas reserves in the Rovuma region in the north. The extraction and export of oil and natural gas are key factors in the development of the Mozambican economy.

The country has extensive coal reserves, especially in Tete province in the north of the country. Coal mining is becoming increasingly important and it is beginning to be exported to international markets. Mozambique is known for mining gems, especially rubies. The wood processing industry includes logging and the production of timber.

The country has reserves of ores, including iron, manganese, bauxite, and gold. The mining of these levels strengthens the country’s industrial sector.

 

Industry:

Oil and gas extraction and processing are among the most important industries in Mozambique. The growing economy requires the development of infrastructure, including roads, ports, airports, and energy facilities.

The food, textiles and chemicals industries are the most widespread in the country. Cattle breeding plays an important role in the economy, as does forestry and the wood processing industry, including the export of wood.

 

Services and other areas of the economy: tourism and transport

 

Natural and historical attractions: Inhambane, Maputo, Mozambique and Bazaruto islands, Gorongosa and Niassa national parks, and beaches.

Mozambique has a long Indian Ocean coastline, which means it offers beautiful white sand beaches, crystal clear seas, and opportunities for diving and snorkeling.

It has a number of national parks and protected areas such as Parc National de Gorongosa, Réserve spéciale de Maputo and Bazaruto National Park, where you can see wildlife including elephants, lions, leopards, and rare birds.

The country is one of the best diving destinations in the world. The coastal areas are known for their coral reefs, providing a unique opportunity to observe a variety of marine life, including sharks, dolphins, and colorful fish. You will also find historical and cultural treasures such as colonial towns, markets, handicrafts, and traditional villages.

Bazaruto Island is a beautiful island national park offering meadow beaches, dunes, and the possibility of whale watching.

 

Waterparks in Mozambique:

 

Form of government: republic

Mozambique is a republic with a parliamentary system of government and a multi-party political system. The basic document that determines the state establishment is the constitution, which was adopted in 2004.

The president has extensive powers and is the head of state and government. He/she is elected by direct vote of the citizens for a five-year term, and appoints the government and has the power to direct the executive branch.

The Mozambican Parliament is called the National Assembly (Assembleia da República) and consists of 250 members elected for five-year terms. Parliament has powers in the legislative process, including passing laws and a checking role over the executive. The judiciary is independent, the judicial system includes the Constitutional Court, the High Court, regional courts, and others.

 

Capital city: Maputo

It is located on the southeastern coast of the Mozambique Channel, not far from the border with the Republic of South Africa.

Maputo was founded by Portuguese settlers in the late 18th century and was known as Lourenço Marques during the colonial era. After Mozambique gained independence in 1975, it was renamed Maputo.

 

Area: 801 590 km2 (309 496 square miles)

 

Population: 31 700 000 (2022)

Mozambique has a very diverse ethnic and linguistic composition. The largest ethnic groups are the Makua, Tsonga, Lomwe, Shona, and Sena.

The official language of Mozambique is Portuguese, which is taught in schools and used in public administration and the media. However, several local languages such as Makua, Tsonga, Lomwe, and Sena are also spoken. Christianity predominates in Mozambique. There is also a significant Muslim minority, especially in the northern parts of the country.

Health care is a fundamental problem, although there are efforts to improve it. The country is struggling with infectious diseases, including malaria, HIV/AIDS, and tuberculosis.

 

UNESCO World Heritage Sites: 1

 

1. Mozambique Island (1991) – A fortified city on the eponymous island. It used to be a trading center of the Portuguese.

 

National parks: 6

 

  1. Gorongosa National Park
  2. Quirimbusr National Park
  3. Bazaruto Archipelago National Park
  4. Zinave National Park
  5. Limpopo National Park
  6. Banhine National Park