Operation: Opération: Mozambique



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Key Figures

2017 year-end results
100% of refugees and asylum-seekers had access to primary and secondary public education 
100% of refugees and asylum-seekers had access to primary health services 
100% refugees and asylum-seekers had access to national HIV/AIDS programmes and antiretroviral therapy
2018 planning figures
85% of asylum-seeker and refugee children enrolled in primary education
6% of people of concern graduated from livelihood trainings employed after 3 months
6% of people of concern (18-59 years) earning at least minimum wages for more than 6 months per year

People of Concern Personnes relevant de la compétence du HCR

Increase in
2017 45,035
2016 38,534
2015 20,447


[["Refugees",4876],["Asylum-seekers",18800],["IDPs",15128],["Returned refugees",6231]]
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2017 {"categories":[2013,2014,2015,2016,2017,2018],"budget":[5.02878967,5.35033532,5.14927993,5.50288191,5.52294825,5.94621359],"expenditure":[3.49976519,3.11008688,2.89281237,2.77095579,3.25396842,null]} {"categories":[2013,2014,2015,2016,2017,2018],"p1":[4.58333246,4.98677933,4.76918068,5.11505699,5.39732245,5.62665857],"p2":[0.44545721,0.36355599,0.38009925,0.38782492,0.1256258,0.31955502],"p3":[null,null,null,null,null,null],"p4":[null,null,null,null,null,null]} {"categories":[2013,2014,2015,2016,2017,2018],"p1":[3.0543081,2.93373586,2.71037374,2.60526196,3.23707626,null],"p2":[0.44545709,0.17635102,0.18243863,0.16569383,0.01689216,null],"p3":[null,null,null,null,null,null],"p4":[null,null,null,null,null,null]}
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  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017
  • 2018

Operational context

In 2017, Mozambique continued to receive asylum-seekers and to host refugees, mainly in Maratane refugee camp in Nampula Province. At the end of the year, some 12,000 asylum claims were pending the decisions of refugee status determination. In addition, another 12,000 asylum claims, already recommended for the refugee status by the National Eligibility Commission, were pending the signature of the Minister of Interior. This hampered the reaching of durable solutions for people of concern.
UNHCR continued to support the National Institute for Refugee Assistance (INAR) in the implementation of a three-year refugee status determination backlog project, which started in 2015.
The tripartite agreement between Governments of Malawi and Mozambique and UNHCR on the voluntary repatriation of Mozambican asylum-seekers from Luwani camp in Malawi was being finalized.

Population trends

At the end of 2017, Mozambique hosted more than 45,000 people of concern to UNHCR, including some 4,870 refugees, 18,800 asylum-seekers, 6,230 refugee returnees and nearly 15,130 IDPs. During the reporting period, there was an increase of over 14 per cent in people of concern to UNHCR, partly due to an increase in arrivals from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Key achievements

  • The verification of all asylum-seekers and refugees in Mozambique was concluded in June 2017 by INAR, with UNHCR’s support.
  • UNHCR together with FAO, UN-Habitat and WFP and the Government of Mozambique implemented a livelihoods project targeting both people of concern and the host community in Nampula. The project aims to help beneficiaries to become self-reliant and to improve their local integration prospects and therefore reach durable solutions.

Unmet needs

  • The naturalization and acquisition of Mozambican citizenship by new-born refugee children did not progress at the expected pace due to lack of financial and human resources. 
  • The lack of resources also posed a challenge in improving refugee status determination as well as achieving progress in statelessness issues.

Working environment

Despite the reservations to the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees on the freedom of movement, employment, naturalization, right of association, the current practices of the Government support de facto/de jure local integration through documentation, naturalization, basic services, (de facto) freedom of movement. In addition, the Government is providing additional land to Maratane camp to improve the self-sufficiency of refugees.

Nevertheless, only a few refugees have been supported in maintaining vegetable, crop or poultry farms to supplement their diet or to generate income. Some 9,000 refugees and asylum-seekers in Maratane camp are dependent on insufficient monthly food rations.

In addition, the asylum procedure in Mozambique does not currently meet the minimum standards of quality, fairness and efficiency, and the refugee status determination backlog is significant. 

Key priorities

In 2017 the UNHCR operation in Mozambique will focus on:

•    improving the quality and efficiency of the asylum process through capacity building;
•    supporting the Government in clearing the refugee status determination backlog (2015-2017);
•    supporting local authorities to formulate the Nampula District Development Strategy/Plan to promote the self-sufficiency of refugees and to share available resources and services between the host community and refugees;
•    providing legal assistance to facilitate the birth registration of refugee children; 
•    implementing cash-based interventions in Maratane camp, subject to available funding.