By Jean Paul Arouff
PORT LOUIS (Reuters) - Mauritius firm, British American Investment, said on Friday it is planning to develop 6,000 hectares of land in Mozambique to ease food security worries on the Indian Ocean island.
The development, in partnership with United Kingdom-based Sun Biofuels Ltd, follows a call to international investors by the Regional Development Company Mozambique for proposals to manage and develop land in the southern Africa country.
"This project ... will help in securing a long term production and supply of some food crops and contribute to a long term green development and lessen dependency on fossil fuels through the production of biodiesel," British American said in a statement.
"Representatives... have met with local authorities of Mozambique during which two locations were earmarked - 4,000 hectares in Manica and 2,000 hectares in Dombe."
Once the lease agreement is signed, engineers and agronomists of the consortium will start the feasibility study, including soil survey and land capability assessment, irrigation plan and business model components.
About half of Mauritius' cultivated land is covered in sugar cane. Supermarket shelves in the country are usually packed with foodstuffs from Madagascar, South Africa, France and Australia.
British American Investment holds stakes in over 50 companies in financial services, transportation, construction and property development, trade and commerce, leisure and tourism and healthcare.