June 28, 2007

World Bank praises government’s performance

The Deputy Chairperson of the World Bank for Africa, Obiageli Ezekwesili, has praised the efforts of the Mozambican government in the fight against poverty and the strengthening of the country's economy. She said that 15 years after the war of destabilization, Mozambique had managed to design macroeconomic policies and other reforms that stabilized the country's economy and improved its people's living conditions. "Mozambique is a special country. We congratulate its efforts to fight against poverty', she said. Ezkwesili also stressed the need to use the country's natural resources, such as coal, gas, and timber, appropriately in the fight against poverty.
Prime Minister Luisa Diogo stressed that Mozambique had been with the World Bank for the past 23 years and there had not been a single interruption. "Normally, other countries have programmes with the World Bank, break them off and then start again. This has never happened with Mozambique. Our programmes were developed under conditions of war and of peace", she added. "Naturally, in peace time the results are much more visible", she added.
As for her discussions with Ezekwesili, she said they talked about the use of natural resources, "and we were listening to the experience of someone who undertook profound reforms in the petroleum sector in Nigeria. She did this with success and transparency, and so we have to learn from her". Ezekwesili was a special advisor on budgetary matters to former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, and chaired the Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative. She was also a founder member, and later director for Africa, of the anti-corruption NGO, Transparency International. (Agencia de Informacao de Mocambique, Maputo)

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