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Missionary Spotlight – Fact File – Mozambique

September 2001
Fact File: Mozambique
 
Area: 309,496 square miles.

Neighbouring countries: South Africa, Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi and Tanzania.

Environment

: Mainly low-lying with a tropical climate; higher terrain in the north and west (Monte Binga 2,436 m). While drought affects its hinterland, cyclones from the Indian Ocean can bring devastating floods. The River Zambesi runs east-west across the country.

Population

: 19 million.

Life expectancy:

37 years. AIDS takes a huge toll (infant mortality is 140 deaths/1,000 live births).

Ethnic groups

: Indigenous Bantu-speaking 99% (Makua, Ronga-Tswa, Lomwe, Sena-Nyungwe, Shona-Ndau, Shangaan, and others); others, including Euro-Africans, Portuguese and Indians, 1%.

Languages

: Portuguese (official), Swahili, and indigenous languages.

Literacy

: 20%.

Capital

: Maputo (1.3 million).Main port: Beira (1 million).

Urbanisation

: 18%.

Economy

: Mozambique was an under-developed Portuguese colony until its independence in 1975. Inefficient Marxist rule followed and a long civil war lasted until 1992. Mozambique is among the poorest countries in the world.

Since 1992 there has been economic growth, but Mozambique depends heavily on overseas aid and on its proximity to South Africa for access to export markets.

It has rich mineral deposits, including coal and iron, and significant hydroelectric power sources.

Religions

: African traditional 40%; Muslim 13%; Roman Catholic 23%; Protestant 14%; non-religious and others 10%. There is much religious syncretism.

Protestant denominations

: United Baptist Church (AEF); Assemblies of God; Evangelical Assemblies of God; Presbyterian; Anglican; various Methodist; others.

 

 

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Mozambique