South-South REDD: A Brazil-Mozambique Initiative

This project helped to create the conditions for Mozambique to embark upon the implementation of a REDD+ initiative.

2009 – 2012

A tree crashes to the ground in a forest after being felled by a man with a chainsaw

Almost 70% of Mozambique, 54.8 million hectares, is covered in forest and other woody vegetation types. Approximately 80% of Mozambique's total population of 20 million live in rural areas where the incidence of poverty runs at 54%.

Dependence on forest resources is high. Eighty-five per cent of rural energy consumption is derived from fuelwood and charcoal, consuming about 20 million cubic metres of wood a year. The annual rate of deforestation is 219,000 hectares per year.

Mozambique’s rural poor are particularly vulnerable to threats to its natural resources through extreme weather events such as floods or droughts. Its extensive coastline makes the nation as a whole vulnerable to changes in sea level that might also result from climate change.

In response, the government of Mozambique signed a memorandum of understanding with Brazil to develop a project – South-South REDD: A Brazil-Mozambique Initiative for zero deforestation with pan-African relevance. Administered and supported by IIED, this project helped to prepare a national REDD strategy for Mozambique. In parallel, pilot payment mechanisms were designed at two sites, based on Brazilian experiences of the Bolsa Floresta programme.

The project designed and tested innovative mechanisms for the development of public policy in Mozambique that targeted deforestation and involved payments for environmental services. The project fit with the intention of the Growing Forest Partnerships initiative to strengthen partnerships towards locally controlled forestry.

Project objectives

The main purpose of the project was to create the conditions under which Mozambique was able to embark on the implementation of a REDD initiative. The project was divided into four main areas:

  1. The development of a process towards national REDD strategy – including a national multi-stakeholder dialogue, the strengthening of institutional capacity and pilot demonstration projects
  2. Discussion about how to implement policies and measures proposed in the national REDD strategy
  3. Development of viability studies for pilot mechanisms for payments for environmental services and public policies related to REDD, and
  4. Dissemination of experiences of the South-South REDD collaboration between Mozambique and Brazil.


This project helped to design and implement a robust roadmap that established the necessary steps for the REDD+ process at national level. Contact with Brazil also enabled the exchange of knowledge regarding local-level planning tools for REDD+, with a particular focus on Manica province.

The development of the REDD+ readiness preparation proposal (RPP) was a key milestone in the process, marking the role of the technical support to government. Mozambique’s RPP was formally submitted to the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility in January 2012 and approved in March the same year.

As a result, Mozambique had the opportunity to access US$3.8 million to establish a REDD+ strategy, policy and institutional framework, and the reference level and monitoring systems for emissions reduction and other co-benefits.


The Mozambique Ministry of the Environment (MICOA)

The Mozambique Ministry of Agriculture (MINAG)

Centro Terra Viva (CTV)

Universidade Eduardo Mondlane (UEM)

The Sustainable Amazon Foundation (FAS)



The Norwegian Embassy, Maputo