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Since 2000, more than nine million Mozambicans have been affected by disasters caused by natural hazards. Zambezia is classified as one of the country’s poorest provinces. Mortality and fertility rates are the highest in the country, while life expectancy, at 36, is also the lowest in the country. 76% of the population in Zambezia does not have access to or use of potable water, and 92% does not have safe sanitation. The humanitarian and socio-economic situation, combined with its location, has made Zambezia vulnerable to floods and drought. The 2006-2007 rainy season caused severe flooding, displacing large numbers of people and affecting the general population’s usual sources of income. This situation put a huge amount of pressure on food security and limited access to basic services such as education, asset creation and health care.
This market assessment, which adapted the EMMA methodology for the pre-crisis context, was intended to develop a baseline for markets that are found to be critical (in EFSL as well as WaSH) with the aim of improving the preparedness capacities of Oxfam and its partners in the province of Zambezia (districts of Murrumbala and Nicoadala) for emergency and recovery programmes; to strengthen the capacity of Oxfam and other interested national parties for market analysis and its use in response, preparedness, and contingency planning and DRR analysis; and to advocate with the key national interested parties for the effective use of market analysis and for market-oriented programming. The assessment looked at the fish, rice, sesame, maize, sweet potato, cassava and bleach market systems. This condensed report provides an overview of the study with external links to some sections of the report (such as market maps).
The study found that the most appropriate response model for floods and hurricanes was a combination of cash for work (geared at rehabilitation of basic infrastructure for the operation of the market), complemented by unconditional cash transfer actions for especially vulnerable groups, along with market support actions (small/medium scale producers or distributors), especially in the bleach market. The bleach market emerged as the critical market in which Oxfam can most contribute, in response actions as well as through DRR. Fish (Murrumbala) and rice (Nicoadala) should also be incorporated into Oxfam’s strategic work in Mozambique. Given the high value of sesame for export, and its storage capacity, this crop is key for ensuring food security for the most vulnerable people, and should therefore be considered as a key strategy in the area of DRR with an EFSL approach.