Mozambique: Government wants to develop paper industry with support from Finland

6 November 2008

Helsinki, Finland, 6 Nov – The Mozambican government plans to develop a paper industry in order to make use of its existing natural resources and for that purpose has the support of Finland, the Mozambican agriculture minister, Soares Nhaca said in Helsinki Tuesday.

Nhaca said that studies were underway in the provinces of Zambézia and Niassa to identify the possibilities of investing in this area, with community involvement, as a way of them acquiring know how.

Soares Nhaca said that these studies were at an advanced stage and that, during the current visit by Mozambique’s head of state, Armando Guebuza, to Finland, it was hoped that Finnish firms, Stora Enso and UPM would make an announcement about this investment.

“On this visit we hope to see concrete results, particularly in the forestry sector, because Finland is the leader in development of forestry production and paper in the world, with two world leading companies. We hope that these technologies will be transferred to Mozambique, as the Finns have interest in investing in forestry and paper production,” the minister said.

According to Nhaca, if the investment goes ahead, the paper factory would be set up in the northern province of Niassa.

But the government recognises that setting up a paper industry in the country requires a large investment in research to identify the species of tree that will supply wood to make pulp.

“Only after we have wood available would the investment fully begin. That could take around seven years. This is a long term investment,” Nhaca said. (macauhub)