Building Africa's Information Highway: The Case of Mozambique







Seventh meeting of the Technical Thirty-first session of the Commission/ Preparatory Committee of the Whole twenty-second meeting of the Conference of Ministers

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

30 April - 3 May 1996 6-8 May 1996


THE CASE OF MOZAMBIQUE[1]Executive Summary

This report analyses the 'infostructure' of Mozambique, i.e. the capacity to use electronic information services and their state of development in the country. The report is subdivided in the following chapters:

1. Economy and demographics

2. Education and human resources

3. Telecommunications

4. Broadcasting

5. Computer networking

The inavailability of statistics makes assessment of the development situation difficult and requires to depend on circumstantial evidence. This inavailability is largely a result of the war which ended only in 1992 and which left the country in a damaged state in all sectors of society.

1. Mozambique is an extremely poor and underdeveloped country. Average individuals' buying power is very low and does not allow for any luxury. Much of its infrastructure including civil services are damaged in the war which ended in 1992. A market economy is just beginning to take shape, with the best growth prospect for the services sector.

2. The Government is strongly committed to development and prepared to collaborate with international partners in any endeavour of development. The business community is well aware of the extremely limited buying power of the population. The levels of education and job experience are shallow. All combined, the environment for introduction of information and communication technologies is not favourable. Only NGO's and international organisations are more advanced in using information technology. However, similar organisations in other countries such as Kenya and Senegal appear to be more advanced in this regard, as they are operating in a more spohisticated environment.The Government has no policy for development and use of 'information highway', although the first moves to develop such a policy are now underway.

3. Upon indepence in 1975 the government inherited an illiteracy rate of an astounding 97% of the population. In 1995 this rate has dropped to an estimated 67%. Only a very minimal percentage of primary school alumni continues its educational career. Only very limited capacity for professional and academic education exists. The capacity and quality of the existing education system are wholly inadequate.

4. Human resources for information development - Training in information technology is only now beginning at the national university, open to non- university students. Trained IT experts

and technicians are extremely scarce. The publishing and audio-visual industry is small although a core exists.

Government should develop a policy in support of "information highway" infrastructure and applications.


Communications regulation - Mozambique has an autonomous regulator for the communications sector and value added network service are in the free competition domain. However, specific regulation for this sub-sector is being developed slowly. There are few countries in Africa where a 'new style' telecommunications regulator is established and where established, it proves to be useful for the development of new services 1 . There is no media censorship.

Telecommunications quality - The quality of the TDM infrastructure to support applications such as Full Internet can be considered good in the capital city and the provincial capitals. Rural access is often poor and 64 Kbps access is not possible yet. The quality of the network is above African average and comprehensive programmes are under implementation to improve rural access. Many parts of the country are difficult to connect due to low population density and mountainous terrain. The digitalisation of the public network is advanced reaching over 90% of capacity (switching and transmission) during 1996. Inter-urban communication is excellent with only few exceptions soon to be rectified. The introduction of new services and availability of 64 Kbps lines are inadequate.

Telecommunications investment - Investment at TDM is high and the network is being expanded fast. Mozambique spends 5% of GDP on telecommunications, among the highest in the world. Yet this is not leading to immediate positive effects on macro-economic level. Affordability of telecommunications is a major obstacle to expansion of networks and services. The public telecommunications network is thin with a teledensity of 0.36 lines per 100 population.

Broadcasting - There is a state broadcasting organisation and a private one. The latter takes an interest in distance education.. Computer networking - Two organisations offer Internet: Centro de Informatica Universidade Eduardo Mondlane (Maputo) and Marconi - Teledata Lda. The latter plans to inaugurate its service in April 1996. The penetration of PC's is very low. However, as a result of a 'late start', in Mozambique the vast majority of PC's are using Windows based applications.

10. CIUEM is offering Full Internet service using a 9,600 bps leased line to South Africa. A new 64 Kbps VSAT circuit is being implemented at this moment. The services currently offered are messaging and on campus only WWW. Nearly all 540 users are international organisations and NGO's, apart from a small group of university lecturers and students. Charges are between USD 10 and 50 per month with no volume charg

Conclusions and recommendations

1. Popularisation of computer networking requires convincing demonstration of its benefits to local users and audiences. One way of doing this is using Internet in education at community centres in an on-stage setting. Internet has so far practically only reached international users who are economically rather insulated from the local society.

2. Ways must be found to avail 64 Kbps lines in a flexible manner to up- country locations, since the existing public telecommunications infrastructure does not permit applications requiring 64 Kbps outside the university campus where the only Internet service provider is located.

3. The public telecommunications service provider TDM should develop working relationships with its professional customers and develop its human resources in the area of datacommunications. This will contribute to a more responsive service on the part of TDM and assist them in defining additional services.


4. Existing initiatives may require external support as follows:

CIUEM for training and content creation on Internet. CIUEM is currently the most advanced in introducing Internet in the country.

Teledata Lda for Internet user awareness and implementation in professional organisations. Teledata is yet to launch an Internet service but is making use of technical resources at Marconi (Portugal), its parent company.

Support Internet and Distance Education through Mozambican organisations CIUEM, RTK, TDM, as well as CSIR (S.Africa) and TFA (Kenya). The latter two are jointly preparing a distance education support strategy for sub Saharan African countries including Mozambique.

iii1. Economy and demographics

1.1 National and economic indicators

Mozambique is a very large country covering 799,390 sq. kilometers. It is among the very poorest and underdeveloped countries in the world, which is mainly due to the war which ended only in 1992 and previous centrally planned economy dominated by state entreprises. The population is estimated at 17 million, 13% of whom are living in urban environments. The government estimates that 60% of the population lives in conditions of 'absolute poverty'. [w1]The largest age group is between 0 and 20 years comprising more than half the population. However, the last national census was carried out in 1982 and the next one is planned for 1997. Due to a period of intermittent war statistics are incomplete.

Gross Domestic Product stood at USD 1.46 bn in 1993. GDP growth in 1993 and 1994 was 19% and 5.3% respectively 2 ; 4.8 in 1995 (est.) and expectations for 1996 vary and may be unreliable as they are also dependent on unpredictable outcome of IMF loan and debt rescheduling packages. Inflation is running relatively high at around 50% p.a. Balance of payments deficit reached USD 236 million in the 3rd quarter of 1995, which is 6% up compared to the 3rd quarter of 1994, whereas national debt service consumes 65% of the national budget 3 .The value of imports is over six times the value of exports.

Estimated unemployment figures are not available due to incomplete government statistics. However, unemployment and sub-employment are without doubt very high and visible throughout the country.

Table 1: Demographics

                           1992          1994          1996          1997          
Total population           15,583,200    16,500,000    17,000,000                  
Ages 0 - 14 (%)            46                                                      
Ages 15-59 (%)             50                                                      
Ages 60 - up (%)            4                                                      
Population growth %/yr     2.8           2.7                                       
Urban population %         1992          131993        1994          Source:       
                                                                     Bureau de     
                                                                     Table 2:      
GDP USD bn                                             2.016                       
GDP growth/year            3.3           19.0          5.3           4.8           
GDP/capita                                             118.6                       
Inflation %                58.8          49.8          70.2          50.0          
Unemployment %             n.a.          n.a.          n.a.          n.a.          

1 USD = n Meticais 2,432 3,723 11,007*)

Source: Plano de Reconstrucao Nacional 1994-96, CNP, Maputo 1993; Bureau de Informacao Publica, end 1995.

1.2 Geographical spread of population & economic activity

The country is divided into ten provinces which are subdivided into 128 districts. The capital Maputo has an estimated 2 million inhabitants. There second and third largest cities are Nampula in the far North and Beira in the central Zambezi province. The economic hubs in the country are Maputo (city and province) and Beira.

The services sector is showing the fastest growth. Manufacturing industry is in decline, with a privatisation programme still under implementation resulting in closure or reorganisation of state enterprises.

Following the recent regaining of peace in the country since as recent as 1992, most economic activity is still concentrated in and around cities and towns. Remote developments in e.g. farming are still very rare. Destruction of the infrastructure in the provinces is wholesale, especially the transport infrastructure and power supply have suffered, as have facilities for public administration and public services such as for education and health. The national telecommunications backbone network has been rehabilitated (see more details para. 3). The centrally located provices Niassa and Tete have stayed behind in development, a situation which is only now being rectified.

Table 3: Economic sectors (1993) in % of GDP

Agriculture and fisheries                  26.5                                      
Manufacturing industry                     15.1Construction                          
Transport and communications               14.4                                      

Services 33.4

Source: Bureau de Informacao Publica, various sources

1.3 Political situation

Presidential elections were held in October 1994. The results were a reconfirmation of President Joaquin Chissano and his FRELIMO party in power, and a multi-party Parliament in which main contender RENAMO is represented. RENAMO leader Afonso Dhlakama has accepted defeat and since kept a relatively low profile in national politics. The next major electoral test is scheduled for October 1998 for presidential elections.

1.4 National finances

The state budget for 1995/1996 4 is covered for 44.5% by revenue and 55% by external financing including donor financing.

The Government has declared the following economic policy priorities:

Reduce inflation

Social justice

Increase the base of taxpayers

Stimulate private investment

Among the budgetary objectives towards these priorities are:

Reduce fiscal deficit from 30% (1994) to 21% (1995)

Improve collection of taxes from 18% (1994) to 21% (1995)

Reduce total expenditure from 47% (1994) to 42% (1995)

Fiscal reforms are under study. Measures considered are to improve tax collection, protect the national economy and stimulate private investment. Customs duties represent around 25% of fiscal revenue and are therefore unlikely to be relaxed. Customs duties on computer equipment are relatively high at 45% of declared value. Government strategy for development comprises the following key elements:

Reinforce human capital through education and health

Rehabilitate the national transport infrastructure

Support small scale farming

Create a favorable investment climate with anti-inflation and balance of payment policies

After expenditure for public administration, the budget allocated to education and health has increased from 14% of the total in 1994 to 22.5% in 1995. Expenditure for defense and security was reduced from 38.5% to 24.5%.

The budget of the State for 1995-1996 was approved in mid 1995.

2. Education and human resources

2.1 Preface The Government of Mozambique has no policy on Information Technology (IT) and no policy on introduction of IT in government institutions. This contrasts with the circumstance that the state is the major consumer of informatics equipment imported into the country. In February of 1996, a commission was formed upon an initiative of the government to formulate a national IT policy. This commission has yet to begin its work and its terms of reference are not known. The commission is likely to deliver an initial national policy proposal, which thereupon must be finetuned and incorporated in government business. The director of Centro de Informatica Universidade Eduardo Mondlane is a member of the commission.

2.2 Background

Upon indepence in 1975 the government inherited an illiteracy rate of an astounding 97% of the population. In 1995 this rate has dropped to an estimated 67%. The literacy rate in 1994 for Mozambique was 32.9% against 40.8 for the African average. For women the figure was 21.4% against African average 28.5%. Around 40% of schools are destroyed or inoperational as a result of the war. Government strategy for education is to reduce the illiteracy rate as fast as possible. The Ministry of Education gives priority to boosting primary education in the rural areas and targeting especially women, as the latter category will have the biggest social impact.

Only around 40% of primary school age children enroll in schools. Primary education is free of charge although community-level contributions are needed, and from the first term of 1996 the government will distribute free text books for all pupils; consignments of the books are now effectively being shipped, imported from India and financed by donors. Secondary education is not free and parents must pay according to their means.

Education statistics show a weak performance as far as continuation of education is concerned. Of a total of 1.2 million children enrolled in the first five-year phase of primary education, only around 100,000 continued with the second two-year phase. Of a total of 1.3 million children enrolled in the primary education system phase one plus phase two, only less than 50,000 continued for secondary, professional, technical or university education. These figures are drawn from 1992 statistics; however, more recent statistics if they were available would show a similar pattern since schooling capacity has not improved dramatically since. In 1996, a total of over 1,6 million pupils will enroll in phase one and two primary education, which is up 200,000 from the previous year. There is a tendency among primary school alumni in the rural areas to join the ranks of urban unemployed. This is prompting the government to strengthen education in basic technologies and crafts, making young people ready for local labor markets.

In 1995, less than 43.8% of pupils in phase one secondary education graduated to be able to continue in phase two secondary. These figures show a most serious thinning of the ranks of students as they continue their educational careers.

A major problem in Mozambique is that there are not enough schools and teachers. By end 1995 there were 4,000 phase one primary schools and 200 phase two primary schools in the whole country. There are only 48 schools for secondary education in the country. At the beginning of the first 1996 semester it was established that there is a serious shortage of thousands of teachers and the government intended to put an emergy measure in place to train 3,000 new teachers. During 1996 1,160 new primary schools will be added to the existing capacity. The above circumstances account to a large degree for the extreme scarcity of human resources with professional background are extremely scarce.

Table 4: Enrollment Continued Education (1992-93)

Primary, phase 1                           1,199,500                                 
Primary, phase 2                           114,800                                   
Secondary                                  26,700                                    
University preparing                       3,500Technical/professional               
Training for teachers                      3,900                                     

Higher education 4,600

Source: Ministerio da Educacao

2.2 Continued and professional education

There are three levels of technical education. The elementary level is a three-year programme teaching basic skills such as carpentry. The second three-year level is on topics such as agriculture, mechanics and electro- engineering, intended to prepared directly for the labor market. The third three-year level is on agriculture, chemistry etc. The working and learning conditions of the schools concerned are inadequate. Libraries and laboratories are barely available. Personal computers for educational purposes are wholly un-known in the relevant establishments. The only business administration college was closed but the gevernment has decided to re-open one. The third level of technical education produced 1,256 graduates in 1993. There are two second level professional education facilities: Instituto Industrial in Maputo and same in Beira. Less than 400 students reportedly graduate from each one of them annually. The latter establishments were not visited for the purpose of this report.

The provision of higher and academic education, including technical eduation is also still highly inadequate. The only academic institution to date is Universidade Eduardo Mondlane with 4,000 enrolled students and 600 graduates per year. Demand for academic education far outstrips capacity: in 1995 3,000 candidates applied for admission but only 800 were taken in. Fellowships for graduate academic studies abroad are very scarce, with Portugal being the main host accommodating 20 scholarships per year. However, many lecturers go abroad for their post-graduate programmes.

Meanwhile, it has been recognised that compatibility between graduates and the labor market leaves much to be desired. There is no tradition of internships; however, policy-makers are now aware of the importance of this educational instrument. The government recognises its strategic importance and wishes to create and reinforce the practice.

Some local employers reported that the academic level of graduates at local institutes of education are significantly below level of comparable graduates abroad.

2.3 Initiatives professional education

Private sector initiative in professional education will be indispensable and is in fact already taking place on a limited scale. The first polytechnic school in the country will be operational in August 1996: Instituto Superior Polytechnico e Universitario, an initiative of the private television broadcasting company Radio Televisao Klint (RTK). The initiators expect that 400 students could enroll in the first academic year to start in August 1996. A 'zero-semester' is starting in March 1996.

Within this polytechnic, a School for the Arts will be established incorporating a programme for development of distance education, reportedly headed by Prof Lourenco do Rosario of UEM. The implementation plan for this 'Telescola' foresees a studio with teachers and school centres consuming the service. Interaction between students and teachers can be done by telephone. The initiators intend to offer free but they will require examination fees. The initiative has not incorporated computer assisted education.

A private new university will also start in August 1996, the Universidade Catolica de Mocambique, with small numbers of students: around 40 to 50 in both the planned Beira and the Nampula establishments. Proposed curricula are in law, management, education sciences, health sciences, philosophy and theology.

2.4 IT education

There are two entities providing a semi-professional information technology education: Centro de Informatica Universidade Eduardo Mondlane and EXI Lda, a private firm which markets professional computer systems in Mozambique.

CIUEM has just inaugurated two PC-classrooms where next to business application programmes also short courses (1 - 12 weeks) in project management, database management and systems analysis are to be offered. Besides university students, also private individuals can enroll for courses against payment of fees. The motivation for CIUEM to offer this service was that an increasing number of government divisions declare their dependency on computers and therefore must acquire skills.

Apart from the above initiatives, a number of PC system vendors is also offering courses. Course in this category focus on application programmes only.

According to local industry sources, training at managerial level is urgently required in order to give IT project implementation a chance for success. IT management training is insufficiently available and rarely demanded in the country.

2.5 Distance education

School television does not exist in Mozambique. The Ministry of Education takes the view that for education TV priority should be given to teacher training. The majority of the teachers lacks adequate training. Plans are under way to set up a teachers improvemnet scheme, through a new entity Instituto Aperfeccionamento Profesores.

Within the envisaged Instituto Superior Polytechnico e Universitario and with the involvement of Radio Televisao Klint (RTK), a Telescola is being planned for higher education (see above para. 2.3).

Distance education is currently a priority topic within CIUEM and RTK in Mozambique and with CSIR (Pretoria - South Africa) and Telecommunications Foundation of Africa (Kenya). The latter two are jointly preparing a distance education support strategy for sub Saharan African countries including Mozambique.

2.6 Human resources for information development

Trained information technology specialists are scarce. There is a very small 'elite' of PC-users which may in majority be exposed to Windows-based systems. Around 1,500 PC's are sold per year, according to trade sources. Professional systems i.e. local area network environments, client-server environments, are very rare. We only found one local company which sells and supports such technology and trains users: EXI Lda. The training facility at CIUEM (the University) still has to start delivering graduates.

The publishing, graphics and audiovisual industries are very small in Mozambique. There are only two 'serious' newspapers with little sophistication and there are two fax newsletters. There are two television broadcasters with surprisingly much local content though, are three radio broadcasters. More is found on broadcasting in Chapter 4 below. On the streets of Maputo there are no specialised retail outlets for books or press to be seen.

As a result, local human resources for creating media content including electronic media will be most limited.

3. Telecommunications infrastructure

3.1 General

Telecommunications revenue in percentage of GDP is extremely high at 5%. Affordability is therefore seen as the major obstacle to expansion of the network.. Over the past three years, expansion of the network has far outpaced economic growth. This development contradicts the popular thesis that telecommunication growth is in sync with economic growth.

The quality of the TDM infrastructure to support applications such as Full Internet can be considered good in the capital city and the provincial capitals. Rural access is often poor and 64 Kbps access is not possible yet.

Nearly all telecommunications services are provided by a national monopoly. value added network services and mobile radio communications are to date the only services offered by others than the national telecommunications monopoly. There is an autonomous regulatory authority governing the telecommunications sector. The source of nearly all figures in this chapter on telecommunications is TDM, the national telecommunications operator (details para. 3.3).

3.2 Sector regulation

Mozambique has a formally independent regulatory body, the Instituto Nacional das Comunicacoes de Mocambique (INCM), created in 1992 and subordinate to the Ministry of Transport and Communications. The Higher Telecommunications Council is a consultative body with members appointed by the government, to recommend national policies. The INCM has a staff of 40 and intends to develop regulation on the basis of law 22/92 which 'defines the fundamental principles to be observed in the establishment, management and exploration of telecommunications infrastructures and services' (1992).

The regulation of 'complementary services' such as private VSAT data networking, 'value added data services' and Low Earth Orbit satellites have for some time been among the most pressing strategic issues before INCM currently requiring detailed regulation. The Universidade Eduardo Mondlane in Maputo is allowed by the Institute and confirmed by government to make use of international VSAT for Internet access (more on Internet in section 5). Two other organisations have obtained exceptional permission to use private VSAT for their international datacommunications in southern Africa: British Petroleum and FCM (railways). License fees are computed on the basis of traffic and bandwidth and loss of traffic for TDM is neither a determinant nor element of the fees.

For the moment, the state telecommunications company TDM is the only entity licensed to operate basic switched telephone service, international services, and a mobile cellular service, the latter if necessary with the combined resources of a foreign company through a joint venture. This is deliberate policy to ensure that the national operator obtains an edge in this area of telecommunications, to the benefit of the nation and in line with TDM's universal service obligations. Only a second cellular operator may be a foreign entity. However, any licensing of a second operator would require a change in the law.

There are two small service providers: a group of three large organisations exploiting a voice only trunk radio service among themselves and an Internet service provider (see details in para. 5). Telecommunications sector regulation allows for independent companies to provide 'complementary services' requiring complementary infrastructure provisions. Examples in this category are mobile radio, paging and electronic messaging.

INCM intends to elaborate a system for control on quality of service of licensed operators, particularly operators of monopoly services. In this regard, INCM is also to watch that the

dominant operator cannot block the development of other companies, through interconnection obstacles and/or charges.

Other areas of responsibility of INCM are: type approval; tariffs; radiofrequency allocation and monitoring; planning and international coordination. On type approval the Institute works on the basis of a list of type approved equipment. In the case of submission of unlisted equipment, INCM examines the specifications and may then decide on a technical test prior to approval. Keeping the list in tune with global technological trends is a major challenge. Tariffs of monopoly services must be cost based. INCM advises the government on operator proposed tariff changes for monopoly services which the government must approve. With regard to broadcasting, the INCM deals with the technical aspects of radiofrequency allocation and testing of tranmission equipment. A broadcasting license will be issued by the Direccao Nacional de Informacao, a division of the office of the prime minister.

3.3 National monopoly TDM

The national telecommunications operating company is Telecomunicacoes de Mocambique, E.E. (TDM) and is the dominant service provider. The posts and telecommunications functions of the parastatal for national communications services were separated in 1981. TDM was reorganised in 1991 and emerged with a new commercial board of directors. The first annual report of TDM was released in 1993.

The government through the Ministry of Transport and Communications in consultation with the Ministry of Finance must approve capital expenditure by TDM which otherwise enjoys autonomy within the framework of its universal coverage obligation. TDM is currently implementing an investment programme worth USD 60.6 million. For some projects notably rural, TDM is able to attract donor finance. For the GSM project which is the largest single investment, a private sector partner will be selected.

The existing telecommunications law may be changed to accommodate foreign ownership of TDM to the tune of 20% of stock value. This however requires a change in law. The excessive debt burden of Mozambique may well force the government to push ahead with privatisations. As a well managed company TDM is a likely candidate for a partial sale. Independent (foreign) telecommunications operators in niche markets including cellular mobile independent from TDM are unlikely to be licensed for the time being: the government is unwilling to relinquish control of the telecommunications sector which brings in significant tax revenues of USD 20 million per annum.

Much of the reconstruction of the national telecommunications network could be financed through grants and donated equipment and installations. This explains a relatively heavy telecommunications infrastructure in comparison to economic performance (see para. 1). Telecommunications revenue in percentage of GDP is extremely high at 5%. TDM considers affordability as the major obstacle to expansion of the network. Over the past three years, expansion of the network has far outpaced economic growth. This development contradicts the popular thesis that telecommunication growth is in sync with economic growth.

TDM is displaying a good performance in fulfilling its mission of providing basic telecommunications service, starting from a situation of disrepair of the national network at the end of the war. The company is managed in a modern fashion and has a number of subsidiaries in joint venture with international parties for specific functions. Joint ventures for telecommunications services normally have TDM as the senior partner. An exception to this rule is an Internet service, provided independently by the Centro de Informatica Universidade Eduardo Mondlane (see para. 5).

TDM does not entertain special working releationships with its professional customers and requirements of professional customers beyond the provision of direct exchange lines are not being addressed in a responsive manner. There are relatively few technicians within TDM which have a background in datacommunications. Experience shows that a close working relationship between professional users and the telecommunications operator is important and can prevent delays and implemantation problems on the part of datacommunications service providers such as Internet service.

3.4 Coverage of telecommunication

Teledensity in Mozambique is with 0.36/100 (1995) below African average. Spread of telecommunications access is uneven: the cities are generally well served but towns and villages are severely underserved. . Line density is heavily concentrated in Maputo with 64% of all lines. The second and third biggest cities have 11% and 7% of the lines, respectively. These ratios remain unchanged until 1999 and are unaffected by increased coverage of rural areas. Of 142 administrative districts, 73 were served by TDM at the beginning of 1995 and a total of 69 districts were not served at all. These districts are characterised by low population density and/or difficult terrain for construction of telecom installations. During 1995, a number of these districts were connected to the national grid, through the rural project Phase 1 financed by the European Union. In Phase 2 (1996-97) another 55 district centres and 45 administrative posts will be added to the national network by 1998 in a USD 8.6 mio EU financial package. The only area remaining with nearly no service is the province Tete. TDM is trying to define a project for donors to address this situation. A project for the installation of public telephone booths in 230 locations across the country is due to start during 1996, with financial support provided by Denmark. See Annex 1: Map Districts Served by TDM.

3.5 Expansion

The national telecommunications backbone has been rehabilitated following the war. The transmission capacity is being expanded significantly, from 3,542 circuits in 1994 to 5,562 in 1995. Switching capacity has likewise been expanded since then. In 1995, the infrastructure had 59,904 connected direct lines. The annual growth of connected lines is between 5 and 6% and by 1998 72, 840 subscriber lines are due to be in operation. Average cost per new line is USD 4,500. TDM has budgeted USD 13 mio for a GSM network to be constructed in 1996-1998.

3.6 Quality

Improvement of the equipment in the network is showing marked results. In 1995, call completion rate stood at 74%, up from 66% in 1994. This is far higher than what is normally encountered in African countries. The number of reported faults per 100 lines is 54 in 1995. The average fault clearing time on a subscriber line is eight days, which is lower than what is reported from various other countries (e.g. Ghana, Kenya, Senegal). The rate of digitalisation in switching has increased from 71% in 1994 to 90% in 1995. The digitalisation rate in transmission increased from 85 to 93% in the same period. Communication with Zimbabwe and South Africa will improve. These digitalisation rates are also significantly higher than in many other African countries.

International access will improve during 1996 following implementation of a new international gateway switch, a USD 2 million project due for execution during 1996. Inter-urban 64 Kbps leased line access is not yet available. X.25 interurban access will be available in 1996 in two destinations in addition to Maputo only (see section 5.3.2 on X.25 packet switching). Local access in Maputo will improve as a result of the installation of fiberoptic loops around the city centre, currently in execution.

Tariffs of TDM standard telephone service are adapted four times per year at the rate of inflation. It appears that in so doing tariffs remain stable in USD except line installation which goes up in 1996 by 20%. The TDM rates for local and inter-urban calls are lower than in many other African countries. TDM cannot furnish tariff changes policy, beyond its regular inflation corrections.

Table 5: Telecommunications Indicators 1995

Population million                             17                       10.69,800   
Total GDP USD million                          1,500                    est         
Per capita income USD                          110                      est         
Telecommunications expenditure in % GDP        5                                    
Number of main lines                           59,904                               
Teledensity/100 population                     0.36                                 
Telecom service joint ventures y/n             n                                    
Independent Telecomm Regulator y/n             y                                    

Number of telecom operators 1 *

*Source: Telecomunicacoes de Mocambique; Telecommunications Foundation of Africa * non TDM or TDM subsidiaries

Table 6: Quality of Service

                                         1994          1995          1996            
Digitalisation switching %                             71            90              
Digitalisation transmission %                          85            93              
Call completion rate %                   66                          74              
Faults per 100 lines/year                57                          54              

Average wait new line (months) 22 20 15

Source: Telecomunicacoes de Mocambique

Table 7: Telecommunications Tariffs

                                  1995                   1996                         
                                  MT            USD                      MT            
Installation fee subscriber line  638,542       78.05     1,312,588      USD100.0      
Local call 3 min                  266           0.03      394            0.03          
Interurban call 3 min (500 km)    5,325         0.61      7,875          0.60          

International call 3 min 68,805 7.86 100,350 7.65 (Europe)

Source: TDM mean rate USD/MT: 8,758 (1995); 13,126 (1996) call charges at business hours; inter-urban calls save 50% during night hours.

Inter-urban telecommunication service is considered very expensive by users. The example of the Cruz Vermelha de Mocambique (CVM, national Red Cross Society) shows that those users who have sufficient economies of scale may trade off TDM service against private mobile radio. CVM is using HF radio for national long distance and occasional international telecommunication among its officers and field offices, whereas they limit the use of TDM service for reasons of cost. The spread of TDM across the country is improving significantly in the experience of CVM.

4. Broadcasting and Electronic Mass Media

There are two television broadcasting organisations and several radio broadcasters in Mozambique. The national state television network Televisao de Mocambique (TVM) covers 56% of the national territory and offers one channel with between 9 and 12 hours of programming per day. Radio e Televisao Klint (RTK) is a private broadcasting organisation which started in 1993 and which is also offering one television channel, with 6 to 9 hours of programming per day. Both programmes have a large amount of 'local content' (news, humor,

sports, religion) and RTK also has some programmes in Tsonga language. RTK and the state organisation Radio Mocambique (RM) have a single channel radio broadcast programme with

the most important reach across the nation. RM broadcasts in eigth national languages and in Portuguese. A third also also private radio station is Radio Miramar.

Broadcasting organisations require an operating license from the Direccao Nacional de Informacao, a division of the office of the prime minister, as well as a radiofrequency license from the INCM (see para. 3.2). Cooperative, mixed and private sectors can participate in radio and television broadcasting as per decree No. 9/93 passed on 22 June 1993. Press freedom is guaranteed in the Lei da Imprensa Decree No. 18/91 of 10 August 1991.

There are two publishers of fax newsletters reporting on national politics and business:

(1) Imparcial and (2) MediaFax.

5. Computer Networking

5.1 General

Electronic messaging including Internet has only recently been introduced in Mozambique. Whereas individual organisations have been using proprietary systems and Fido systems for internal use, the first e-mail service open to the public only started in the course of 1995, at Centro de Informatica Universidade Eduardo Mondlane (CIUEM). Nearly all current users are in international organisations. Awareness of computer communications in Mozambique is very low. The penetration of personal computers is also very low and in fact is only beginning to take off. As a result of this late start, the majority of PCs are state-of-the-art machines running MS Windows application software, which will stimulate demand for various applications beyond e-mail, such as WWW.

5.2 Obstacles and incentives

Low awareness on information technology in the government apparatus, as well as outdated organisational practices are inhibiting computer communication acceptance in the public sector. Severe lack of public funds for public education results in a complete unavailability of public funds

for informatics in education. For the time being, all funding for computer education must be found among donors and private sector.

The limited size and undercapitalisation of the private sector results in low demand for computer communications. The services sector is growing, with emphasis on tourism and international trade and in these sectors early adapters may be found.

High cost of equipment is a obstacle to rapid adoption of computer communications across the country and beyond the usual early adapters of international organisations. Especially the exceptionally high import duties on equipment of 45% are inhibiting local acceptance.

There are no regulatory obstacles for offering computer communications services including (Full) Internet. These service come in the category of 'complementary services' as distinguished by telecommunications reguations and which are open in principle to free competition. Detailed regulation of 'complementary services' are yet to be developed. A sales tax of 20% on services applies.

The improvement of the national telecommunications infrastructure is an incentive, however long distance domestic calls are considered too costly by various users.

5.3 Internet

Internet is currently being offered by CIUEM and as of April 1996 also by Teledata Lda, a subsidiary of Marconi of Portugal and 50/50 joint venture with TDM. In both cases Full Internet service applies.

5.3.1 CIUEM

CIUEM started its Internet service in 1995 and has developed all necessary in-house expertise for managing the service. Marketing beyond the typical potential Internet users of international organisations has not been started. However, a conference to this effect is planned for the end of May 1996. (In this conference, TFA will contribute its research on telecommuniocations and computer networking in Africa. In addition, TFA and CIUEM plan to launch an national standing telecommunications and information services forum which will promote sector development with all local stakeholders. Such fora have already started in a number of other African countries.)

The CIUEM Internet service includes the following:

- Electronic mail

- WWW only on university campus

- user support and training

There is one access point in the country in Maputo (University campus). At present the international link is a leased line 19,200 bps to South Africa. A VSAT link of 64 Kbps is under construction and due to be operational as of April 1996. The government has given a special permission for the international VSAT link to CIUEM. Voice traffic over this line will not be permitted. The VSAT

link will be realised with a grant from Dutch development cooperation and will connect via Transtel in South Africa.

Subscription fees per month levied by CIUEM vary between USD 10 to 50 month, depending on the size of the organisation and whether they are affiliated or not with the university. Volume charges do not apply.

CIUEM is currently connecting around three new users a day, i.e. 5% growth per month. Over 90% of the users are in the capital Maputo, although in each province there are active users as well. The vast majority of the users are international organisations and NGOs. In fact, the number of local users is still insignificant. Discussions are under way with CIUEM and other players to avail e-mail to all institutes of higher education. These users would then benefit from same free access regime as university. No further details available at this time. The organisation may decide to overhaul tariff structure, especially once the Full Internet range of applications is being made available to all users. Content creation for the Internet and World Wide Web has recently begun at CIUEM. The CIUEM node has a Web page for Mozambique ( which is accessible but still under construction. However, it

already contains details on the University, of CIUEM, history of Mozambique, industry and miscellanea. Ten CIUEM staff some of them expatriate are developing WWW content production skills.

Risks at CIUEM Internet are inadequate user awareness and creating the right match between users and service provider, in terms of support and introduction of service features. It should be noted that CIEUM has a large staff of around 30, for development, administration, training and support.

Table 8: Internet charges in USD

 CIUEM                1995                 n*users 1995                  1996(2nd    
                      install.   month                          install.   month       
university lecturers  0          10         60(all university   0          10          
university students   0          0                              0          0           
private individuals   15         25         540(all non-univ.)  30         25          

note: no volume charges

5.3.2 Teledata

Teledata will base its service upon the national and international X.25 network service which it is offering on the local market on behalf of the Portuguese telecommunications multinational Marconi. In this arrangement a relatively low-cost international access will be created, as the expectedly small number of Internet users will piggyback their traffic on the X.25 international data stream against

sub-commercial usage tariffs. Teledata is a 50/50 joint venture company of TDM and Marconi. The services to be offered are the following:

E-mail (full Internet;

Compuserve) WWW (full Internet)


Initially, there will be two access points for the Teledata service: Maputo and Beira. The BBS will likewise be available in both locations. The backbone facility is a 64Kbps line between Beira and Maputo and an international 64Kbps link from Maputo to Lisbon (Portugal). In the 3rd quarter of 1996 a third access point is planned in Nampula. Teledata may place PC's in district commercial centres of TDM, offering Internet access to the public. Tariffs have not been determined yet. The traditional customers of Teledata's X.25 services are banks, airlines. The company is currently preparing its launch campaign. It has around 50 customers for its X.25 service.

Teledata appears to have limited know-how of Internet marketing targeted at African users. They have not yet fixed usage tariffs and conditions. Teledata by virtue of its client base among large organisations will be an important partner to collaborate in introducing Internet into the national private sector communities. TFA research shows that up to now very few Internet users come from the private sector: less than 10% on average throughout sub Saharan Africa 6 .

The challenge for the Teledata Internet offering is finding the right marketing strategy. Significant delay beyond the inauguration date of April 1996 is not to be expected as both TDM and Marconi, owners of Teledata Lda, appear to be very determined

Annex 1: Map Districts Served by TDM

Annex 2: List of interviewed organisations/individuals

Bassopa, Pedro - Cruz Vermelha de Mocambique (Red Cross) Eriksson, Bengt - Teleconsultores Lda Fernandes, Rui - Telecomunicacoes de Mocambique Gomes, Zita - Telecomunicacoes de Mocambique Jorge, Joao - Instituto Nacional de Comunicacoes de Mocambique Juvane, Virgilio - Ministry of Education Klint, Carlos - Radio Televisao Klint Mabila, Franceson - Centro de Informatica Universidade Eduardo Mondlane Marshall, John - Lineas Aerias de Mocambique Massingue, Venancio - Centro de Informatica Universidade Eduardo Mondlane Mendes, C.J. da Silva - Marconi/Teledata Lda Murta, A. - EXI Lda Overvest, Jan - Telecomunicacoes de Mocambique Tayob, Marcelino - SADC Southern African Transport and Communications Commission Warren, Keith - Centro de Informatica Universidade Eduardo Mondlane.


1 Fact File on Telecommunications Regulation in Africa, Telecommunications Foundation of Africa (TFA), Nairobi, Kenya, January 1996.

2 Banco de Mocambique, 1996.

3 Banco de Mocambique, 1996.

4 Orcamento Geral do Estado para o ano de 1995. Ministerio do Plano e Financas. Lei No 3/95 de 19 Mayo 1995. Imprensa Nacional de Mocambique, Maputo.

5 Education in Mozambique 1983-1992. Statistical Summary. Ministerio da Educacao, Direccao de Planificacao.

6 Telematics in Africa - Field research report Telecommunications Foundation of Africa, Nairobi (Kenya) February 1996.

Editor: Dr. Ali B. Ali-Dinar, Ph.D
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