SAMIM and stability in Mozambique: 12-month outlook

Mozambique has been plagued by an ongoing bloody insurgency in its gas-rich northernmost province of Cabo Delgado since 2017. Since 2021 The Southern African Development Community (SADC) has had an ongoing counterterrorism mission to the region known as The Southern African Development Community Mission in Mozambique (SAMIM). With Gas shortages across Europe, the EU has started funding SAMIM and the Mozambique armed forces as they eye up Mozambique’s vast natural gas deposits. 

KJ-1: It is likely that SAMIM operations in Mozambique will increase in number and intensity in the next 12 months.

  • SAMIM started in 2021 and has made it safer to distribute humanitarian aid to the local populace. (Source)
  • In early September, multiple individuals were beheaded, and an Italian nun was shot by Islamic State Central Africa (ISCAP) Mozambique militants as they fled SADC forces. (Source)
  • In August the EU committed to providing $15 million for SAMIM as militants threaten gas projects meant to cut reliance on Russia. (Source)
  • This comes in addition to the $89 million the EU pledged to the Mozambican armed forces. (Source)
  • Locals blame the discovery of natural resources for the growth in the insurgency and further investment could make this worse. (Source)
  • Mozambique’s police chief has called for locals to attack militants with knives and machetes wherever they are found. (Source)
  • 1 Lesotho Soldier was shot dead and 8 injured in a jihadist attack on the 3rd of October 2022 as part of SAMIM operations. (Source)
  • Despite claiming to have moved to a de-escalated phase in some areas, levels of violence still remain high.  (Source)
  • The insurgency spread from Cabo Delgado province to Nampula province in September 2022. (Source)

KJ-2: It is likely that the Mozambique Government will continue to struggle with corruption and stability in the next 12 months.

  • The government is currently mired in corruption scandals and refuses to enact meaningful reforms. (Source)
  • Gas export projects worth over $40 billion are delayed indefinitely by the insurgency leaving the government low on income. (Source)
  • Mozambique risks severe economic destabilization if it engages further with the Russian economy. (Source)
  • Mozambique saw some of Africa’s largest corruption scandals with over $2 billion of bribes received. (Source)
  • Local religious leaders say that young people are not offered enough of a future by the government and are neglected. (Source)
  • The country faces severe flooding this winter announcing warnings for over 1 million inhabitants. (Source)

KJ-3: It is likely that there will be an increased level of interest in Mozambique’s natural gas deposits in the next 12 months

  • French Gas and Oil major TotalEnergies is still sticking to its planned investments in Mozambique despite delays. (Source)
  • Following the suspected sabotage of the Nord Stream pipelines, Western nations are desperately searching for alternative sources of natural gas. (Source)
  • Europe’s gas shortage due to the war in Ukraine caused a spike in inter-regional competition for liquified natural gas. (Source)
  • This gas crisis also resulted in a shortage of floating regasification terminals in Asia, leading to more interest in new sources of natural gas. (Source) 
  • The EU’s recent interest in Algeria also demonstrates that African markets are now in the spotlight. 
  • Tanzania and Mozambique are working together to explore the use of hydrocarbons and Mozambique will start exporting LNG. (Source)

Intelligence Cut-Off Date: 18th of October 2022

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