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    18 May, 2017
Signs of economic recovery
 
Maputo, 18 May (AIM) – The Mozambican economy saw an improvement in tax collection and a reduction in expenditure in the first quarter of this year, according to Rogerio Nkomo, National Director of Institutional Coordination in the Ministry of Economy and Finance.

Addressing a press conference on 17 May, giving the financial results of the first quarter, Nkomo, who is also the Ministry’s spokesperson, said that revenue collected from January to March amounted to 39 billion meticais (US$629 million, at current exchange rates). This is 21 per cent of the target for the entire year of 186 billion meticais, and it is 18 per cent more than was collected in the first quarter of 2016.

Nkomo attributed this result to the fiscal reforms being undertaken by the Mozambican Tax Authority (AT), and to “the economic dynamic experienced in the first quarter”.

The revenue that most contributed to this level of collection, he added, was domestic taxes rather than taxes on foreign trade.

Expenditure was five per cent lower than in the first three months of 2016. The budget for running costs this year is 156 billion meticais, and 36 billion (23 per cent) was spent in the first quarter.

Nkomo said that 43 per cent of this sum went towards the development of human and social capital (which includes such areas as education and health), and 22 per cent was spent on developing a sustainable macro-economic environment.

As for capital expenditure, 80 billion meticais is budgeted for the year, but only 800 million meticais (ten per cent) was spent between January and March.

Nkomo pointed out that about 80 per cent of the expenditure of the first quarter was covered by resources raised domestically, and not by foreign aid.

Nkomo added that in the first quarter there had also been a reduction in foreign direct investment, and in the flow of exports and imports. The main positive factor offsetting these constraints was the cessation of military hostilities between the government’s defence and security forces and the opposition party Renamo.

There were no longer any Renamo ambushes on the roads, and vehicles no longer had to travel in convoys under armed escorts along what were regarded as dangerous stretches. Nkomo believed it was this renewed freedom of movement of people and goods that had given the economy a new dynamic.
(AIM)
 
 
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President addresses Catholic Bishops
 
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