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Mozambique: World Bank Promises 10 Million Dollars for Cooking Gas

The World Bank announced on Saturday at Anchilo, in the northern province of Nampula, that it intends to support Mozambique in its programme for the mass use of cooking gas, in what is described as a "results based financial scheme", to the value of ten million US dollars.

World Bank representative Zayra Romo announced the financing during the launch in Anchilo of the "National Programme for the Mass Use of Cooking Gas" that was chaired by President Filipe Nyusi.

Romo praised the initiative for its job creation effect. She believed the programme will create many direct and indirect jobs, including among transporters, distributors and retailers in Nampula.

"To accelerate implementation of the programme and attain acceptable costs for a public with scarce resources", she said, "the World Bank will support the Mozambican government through results-based financing to a sum equivalent to 10 million dollars".

Romo believed the programme is economically viable since Mozambique will soon be a major producer of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), as a by-product of the exploitation of the Pande and Temane gas fields in the southern province of Inhambane.

This could cut out the need to import cooking gas and make the gas available to the public at an economically acceptable price.

"To attain this goal, collaboration with the private sector is extremely important to guarantee efficiency and a reliable supply of fuel, so that the consumers do not return to the traditional solutions", added Romo. (Those "traditional" solutions are firewood and charcoal).

Romo believed the programme will have a positive effect on health, particularly of women and children, who will no longer have to inhale the noxious fumes of burning wood fuel. By replacing wood fuel, the increased use of cooking gas will also have a positive effect on the environment by reducing deforestation.

Women would also gain time, she added, since they would no longer have to walk long distances to collect firewood. "Their time can be invested in more productive economic activities that can improve their income", she said. Children could spend more time at school instead of looking for fuel.

The government hopes to benefit, directly and indirectly, about four million people from the cooking gas programme.

Nyusi inaugurated a new unit to fill bottles with cooking gas at Anchilo on Saturday, which cost 570 million meticais (about nine million US dollars), financed by the Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy.




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