EU to provide Mozambique with $116m in coronavirus aid

THE EU will provide Mozambique with €100m in coronavirus-related aid, EU ambassador Antonio Sanchez-Benedito Gaspar said on Monday.

The EU cut off direct budget support to Mozambique in 2016 after the country revealed the existence of hefty state-guaranteed loans that it had not previously disclosed. A number of other donors including the International Monetary Fund also halted aid to Mozambique.

Sanchez-Benedito Gaspar told a press conference in the capital Maputo that the agreement had ‘different characteristics’ to the direct budget support the EU used to provide, and was focused specifically on helping with the socioeconomic consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic.

‘We are happy to have carried out this specific two-year programme, for an amount of €100m,’ he said, adding the agreement was covered by monitoring and transparency clauses.

Mozambique had reported 13,130 cases of the coronavirus as of Monday, with 94 deaths.

In October, the EU agreed to assist Mozambique fight against rebels with links to Islamic State.  An EU delegation said the bloc would assist with ‘logistics for training and technical training in several specific areas, as well as assistance in addressing humanitarian challenges, including medical services’ dealing with the coronavirus outbreak.

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