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Cablegate: Country Clearance Granted for Millennium Challenge Corp

VZCZCXRO9522
RR RUEHLMC
DE RUEHTO #0685/01 1701403
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 191403Z JUN 07
FM AMEMBASSY MAPUTO
TO RUEHLMC/MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE CORP 0204
RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 7474

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 MAPUTO 000685

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KMCA EAID ECON OVIP AFIN OTRA MZ
SUBJECT: COUNTRY CLEARANCE GRANTED FOR MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE CORP
(MCC) CHRIS BERTELS AND MANUEL AVILA TO TRAVEL TO MOZAMBIQUE.

REF: MCC 393

1. Embassy Maputo welcomes and grants country clearance for MCC
Chris Bertels and Manuel Avila to travel to Mozambique, from July
15, 2007 until July 22, 2007. The purpose of this trip is to assess
local audit firm capabilities.
Please advise as soon as possible regarding any schedule or
itinerary changes; refer to paragraph 13 regarding visa
requirements.

2. Control Officer: Brooke Williams, Economic Officer, will be
control officer. She can be contacted at:

-- Office telephone: (258) 2149-27-97, ext.3422
-- Office fax: (258) 2149-35-74
-- Cellular: (258) 82-300-0834

3. Hotel Reservations and Expeditor: Post has made reservations at
the Avenida Hotel. The rate for a single room is $115 single, which
includes a breakfast buffet. Maputo per diem is currently 224 USD
(146 USD for lodging and 78 USD for meals/incidentals). The hotel
accepts dollars, meticais, rand, American Express, Visa, MasterCard,
Diner's Club (credit cards), and travelers checks for payment of
hotel bills. There is $35 per check fee for cashing travelers
checks. The hotel can be contacted at:

-- Telephone: (258) 21-48-4400
-- Fax: (258) 21-49-9600
-- E-mail: bookings@hotelaveninda.com.mz
Expeditor will pick up and drop off at airport.

4. Medical Services: Maputo has limited medical facilities.
Visitors will have to be medevaced in the event of a major injury or
illness. In the past, we have had visitors nearly die because
details of their medevac insurance were not readily available.
Direct Hire employees (not contractors) of the Department of State,
USAID, Department of Defense, CDC, and Peace Corps need not take any
further action. Direct Hire employees of other U.S Government
agencies are requested to provide to their control officer before
arrival a name and 24-hour point of contact for their agency that
can authorize medical evacuation. Contractors are requested to
provide to their control officer before arrival the name, phone
number, and policy number of their medevac insurance provider(s) for
use in case of emergency.

5. Health: Travelers are advised that chloroquine resistant malaria
is present in Mozambique. The most recent guidance from the
Department of State Medical Office recommends weekly use of
mefloquine as the drug of choice for malaria prophylaxis in
chloroquine-resistant areas. Mefloquine must be started one to two
weeks before arriving at post. Daily doxycycline is an alternative
regimen. Doxycycline must be started three days before arriving at
post. Both malaria prophylaxis medications must be continued for
four weeks after departing post.

6. Security and Required Briefing: TDY visitors spending more than
48 hours in Mozambique must obtain a security briefing from the
Embassy's Regional Security Office. The biggest threat facing U.S.
citizens visiting Mozambique is crime. The State Department has
designated Mozambique a critical-threat post for crime. Street
crime and vehicle hijackings are common and can be violent.
Visitors must be vigilant when out in public areas and should not
display jewellery or other items of high value. Visitors should
avoid carrying backpacks or purses, as these can draw unwanted
attention of would-be muggers. Isolated areas, such as along the
Marginal (the Maputo road along the sea), should be avoided as
joggers and pedestrians have been mugged frequently, even during
daylight hours.

7. There are no known terrorist groups active in Mozambique and no
current indications that U.S. citizens are being targeted by
terrorist organizations.

8. The police are poorly paid, poorly equipped, and lack the
professionalism that U.S. citizens are accustomed to in the United
States. Visitors requiring emergency assistance should not rely on
local emergency services, but should contact the Marine Security
Guard at Post One at (21) 49-27-97. Mozambican law requires that
all persons carry an identity document, such as a passport, when out
in public and produce it if requested by police. A copy of passport
identity and visa pages is acceptable. There are certain areas in
the city of Maputo where pedestrian traffic is prohibited, e.g., in
front of the presidential offices located north of the Hotel Polana
on the seaside of Avenida Julius Nyerere and on the Monument to
Mozambican Heroes near the Maputo airport. Such areas are sometimes
marked with international "no trespassing" signs/symbols.

9. Overland travel after dark is extremely dangerous due to poor
road conditions, lack of emergency services, and the increased
potential for vehicle hijackings. Official Americans serving in
Mozambique, including those on TDY, are prohibited from overland
travel outside city limits during the hours of darkness.

MAPUTO 00000685 002 OF 002

10. Consular Registration: All TDY visitors spending more than two
workdays in Maputo are required to register with the Consular
Section in the Chancery to ensure that the Mission has current
emergency contact information for each visitor.

11. Financial Matters: With the exception of the main hotels,
Mozambique is essentially a cash economy. Credit cards are of
limited utility. Vendors will accept U.S. dollars (or at times South
African rand) in lieu of the local currency, the metical. For a day
trip to Maputo, we recommend visitors bring with them USD 100 in
cash for spending money. Dollars can be exchanged at any bank or
currency exchange facility. Embassy Maputo recommends against the
use of travelers checks, as transaction charges are uniformly high.
Please note that Embassy Maputo will need fiscal data in the event
that extensive services or goods are required during the visit.
Mozambican Airlines (LAM) accepts the American Express credit card.
Please note that charge limits are in effect on most credit card
transactions, and hotel bills need to be settled every few days.

12. New Currency: On July 1, 2006, Mozambique introduced its new
currency: the New Metical (abbreviated MTn.) This currency replaces
the Metical(MT). One New Metical is equivalent to 1,000 Meticais (1
MTn = 1,000 MT.) At current exchange rates, 1 USD equals
approximately 26 MTn and 26,000 MT. From July 1st, 2006 through
December 31st, 2006, both currencies are in circulation, and all
prices are expressed in both currencies. After December 31st, 2006,
only the New Metical will be in circulation. The most obvious
differences between the two currencies are that the New Metical
notes have three fewer zeroes than Metical notes of the same value
and that the New Metical notes are in much better condition than
Metical notes. The largest New Metical note is 1,000 MTn (versus
500,000 MT.) The smallest New Metical note is 20 MTn (versus 10,000
MT.) For further guidance, please refer to the images of the New
Metical on our intranet site at
http://maputo.state.gov/Sections/FMO/fmo.htm

13. Visas and Airport Departure Taxes: Visas are required for entry
into Mozambique, and Embassy Maputo urges travelers to have them
prior to traveling. Travelers arriving from a country without a
Mozambican embassy can get visas at the airport or land border entry
points for 20 USD or 300 MTn. Those arriving from a country with a
Mozambican embassy can obtain visas at the airport or land border
entry points for 25 USD. There is an airport departure tax payable
only in cash, of 20 USD or equivalent in Metical or Rand for
regional flights, 8 USD for domestic flights and 20 USD for
intercontinental flights.

14. Luggage Precautions: Post urges travelers to keep in mind
restrictions on carry-on luggage on international flights. At
present, there are restrictions on carrying liquids, gels, and
cosmetics on board international flights leaving the United States.


15. Travelers also should bear in mind that security of checked
baggage is a significant problem for travelers who transit
Johannesburg airport. Many items have been stolen from checked bags,
including the checked bags themselves. The items stolen most often
are electronics (including I-Pods, cameras, and alarm clocks),
toiletries (such as cosmetics, soap, shaving kits and cologne) and
shoes (especially running/athletic shoes). A LOCKED BAG DOES NOT
ENSURE SECURITY. One security measure that seems to meet with some
success is to have your luggage stretch-wrapped at your point of
departure. The stretch-wrapping makes it more difficult for the
thieves to gain access to your luggage. Be aware that flights
between Johannesburg and Maputo are often serviced by a small plane
with little space for carry-on luggage. This may require passengers
to check their larger carry-on items. Please ensure your valuables
are kept in a bag small enough to carry on your lap to keep them
with you at all times. We take this problem very seriously and are
doing what we can to help aid a solution. In brief, please:

-- Leave behind irreplaceable valuables;
-- Always lock your bags;
-- Have your luggage stretch-wrapped when possible;
-- Keep your valuables with you in a small carry-on;
-- Make sure that your carry-on luggage complies with current
international restrictions/regulations.

Johnson

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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