Mozambique’s Maputo province seeks support to increase rice production

6 May 2011

Maputo, Mozambique, 6 May – Mozambique’s Maputo province is focusing on Public-Private partnerships (PPPs) as an alternative way of increasing rice production in the districts of Matutuine and Marracuene, which have already been identified as potential hubs for the crop, said the province’s governor Maria Elias Jonas.

According to the newspaper, the governor is currently visiting Vietnam and her delegation includes representatives from the Bela Vista Rice project, a venture costing US$33 million that is funded by the Libyan Fund for African Development and which aims to develop rice crops in the Matutuine district, in an area of 6,000 hectares.

“Our focus is on re-launching rice production on a large scale in Maputo province and introducing new varieties of the crop. Several tests have been carried out on new varieties in the province and the results are encouraging us to move ahead,” said Jonas.

Another challenge for rice production in Maputo province is related to repairing an irrigation system in the district of Marracuene, with capacity to irrigate 10,000 hectares.

“The visit to Vietnam is an opportunity to intensify our search for partnerships for this project, which we think will be of benefit given the experience and tradition that this country has in producing the crop,” Jonas said.

Recent statistics show that Mozambique currently consumes 650,000 tons of rice per year, but produces just 285,000 tons. (macauhub)