Portugal finances studies for dam on River Pungué, Mozambique

18 July 2006

Maputo, Mozambique, 18 July – Portugal plans to provide financing of 5 million euros for the studies to build a dam on the River Pungué, in central Mozambique, the Portuguese Minister for the Environment, Land Planning and Regional Development, Francisco Nunes Correia said Monday.

The guarantee was given during a visit Correia made to the water treatment plant in Umbeluzi, on the outskirts of Maputo, and later reiterated after signing a cooperation agreement with Mozambique, for the water sector.

The construction of the Pungué dam will contribute to a regular supply of water to the city of Beira, Mozambique’s second-largest city, capital of Sofala province.

Correiasaid the studies would begin “soon” and that construction of the dam was, “an ambition of the Mozambican government that was accepted by Portugal.”

“Previously we did not have the conditions to go ahead, but now I can confirm support for the project,” the Portuguese minister said.

This support is seen as an example of the re-orientation of Portugal’s cooperation policy with Mozambique, announced over the last year by the Portuguese secretary of state for Cooperation, João Gomes Cravinho, during a visit to Maputo, which prioritized millennium development objectives in the areas of education, good governance, justice, water and agriculture.

Under the terms of the cooperation agreement, Portugal will help Mozambique to monitor water resources, in the planning of hydrographical basins and checking the safety of dams. (macauhub)