Mozambique, which is located on the south-eastern coast of Africa, has a population of 20 million. Having emerged from a devastating civil war in 1992, the country has grown at an annual rate of nearly 10 percent. The civil war caused an unprecedented migration to urban areas. A complicated urban organizational structure inherited from the Portuguese did not adequately deal with this influx, and the majority of migrants established themselves in informal settlements.
The urban proportion of Mozambique’s population today is estimated at 36 percent. Three-quarters of these are regarded as informal settlers. The 1990 constitution and the 1997 Land Law affirmed the rights of these settlers, granting anyone who has lived on a particular piece of land for ten years the right to continue to do so. While this is a rare example of tenure security, the sheer mass of informal settlements has made them difficult to manage.
Governmental efforts to reduce social inequality have been largely successful. From 1997 to 2003, poverty fell from 70 percent to 54 percent countrywide. Continued migration to cities, however, has negated this effect in urban areas. In Maputo, for instance, poverty rates increased from 67 percent to 70 percent.
Phase 1: Urban profiling – completed
Phase 2: Action planning and programme document formulation – completed
Phase 3: Project implementation – starting