Population: 29 million (World Bank, 2014)
Languages: Portuguese (Official), Swahili, Makhuwa
Monetary unit: Mozambiqua metical (MZN)
Main exports: Aluminum, prawns, cashews, cotton, sugar, citrus, timber; bulk electricity
GNI per capita: US $630 (World Bank, 2014)
ODA received: $3.9 billion (World Bank, 2013)
Human Development Index ranking: 185/187 (UN, 2014)
Estimated GDP growth: 7.4% (World Bank, 2014)
Twenty years after a brutal civil war that left one million people dead and five million displaced, more than half of Mozambique’s people still live below the poverty line. The recent macro-economic growth in Mozambique has not been inclusive, and the promise of broad-based, private-sector-led economic and social development is not being realized. The vast majority of Mozambicans work in subsistence agriculture and in informal or non-competitive, low skilled services sectors. With limited formal-sector jobs on offer, the 9-million-strong labor force is growing rapidly as the country’s young population (45% are under 15) matures and those benefitting from expanded access to secondary education seek employment.
The Mozambican labor force is expected to increase by more than 300,000 per year, to 15 million in 2030 and 20 million in 2040. This calls for effective strategies that would ensure that the private sector is geared to absorb this human capital as it comes into the marketplace.