Brazil to unfreeze $700mn for building of major Mozambican dam after seven-year hiatus

By Thulani Mpofu October 10, 2023

Brazil has expressed an intention to resume funding construction of a $700mn dam in Mozambique after a seven-year stoppage.

The national news agency AIM quoted Brazil’s ambassador to the southeastern African nation, Ademar da Cruz, as indicating that negotiations for the Brazilian National Social and Economic Development Bank (BNDES) to resume support to the 760mn cubic-metre Moamba-Major Dam are at an advanced stage.

“[It] is a matter of time, da Cruz said, speaking to a Maputo daily Notícias on the margins of a Mozambique-Brazil business meeting. “The resumption of funding is already being discussed and it is all at an advanced level.”

The daily wrote on October 5 that the reservoir will supply Maputo, the capital city of 1mn people, neighbouring Matola city with 1mn more people, and two adjacent rural districts.

Discussions on the project started in 2013 with construction scheduled to begin by May 2016.

However, Macao News wrote on October 10, reviews of 25 projects financed by BNDES, an international development bank owned by Brazil’s government, began the same month, among them the Moamba Major Dam.

All of the projects under review were either in countries with high economic risk or involved Brazilian companies under investigation at the time. While initially deemed “safe,” the dam lost its funding by the end of 2016.

“There are significant developments in the discussion between high level authorities. We are optimistic that the funding will be unblocked,” said da Cruz.

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