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2021-05-10 at 16h09

Portugal and Mozambique sign a Defence Cooperation Agreement in force until 2026

Portuguese Minister of Defence, João Gomes Cravinho and the Mozambican Minister of Defence, Jaime Bessa Neto, signing the cooperation agreement, Oeiras, 10 May 2021 (Photo: João Bica)

The Ministers of Defence of Portugal and Mozambique, João Gomes Cravinho and Jaime Bessa Neto signed a cooperation framework agreement in Oeiras, to run up to 2026, which includes training Mozambican troops.

In a press statement following the meeting, the Portuguese Minister stated he was "highly satisfied" with this agreement, adding that "we had the opportunity to update the cooperation programme according to current challenges"; an "important project for training Mozambican troops and special forces in Catembe and Chimoio" was added to the programme.

"The outcome of the framework programme means there will be four times more Portuguese staff working with their counterparts in Mozambique", he cleared.

João Gomes Cravinho further referred to Portugal and Mozambique as "sister countries" with "close military cooperation for more than 30 years".

"We are very pleased to signal this moment, which in fact coincides with the day the training of Marines begins in Catembe, and we are expectant with regard to the next five years of cooperation between Portugal and Mozambique", he concluded.

Mozambique will "make the most" of this new agreement

The Mozambican Ministry of Defence, in turn, said his country "will make the most" of this military cooperation agreement. Jaime Bessa Neto was pleased with the renewal of this framework programme which, as he noted, "will continue to help Mozambique in training and other projects that have now been added to this new programme".

Portugal’s contribution to the training and capacity building of Mozambican forces envisages training successive armed forces companies, from three to four months, for three years, thereby tripling the Portuguese investment in cooperation projects in the country, which have been in place since 1988.

The Portuguese troops will be in the south of the country, in Catembe, close to Maputo, (Marines) and in the centre (Commandos). We recall that mid-April, two teams travelled to Mozambique to prepare the training on the ground.