Residual Unionism and Renewal: Organized Labour in Mozambique

Edward Webster, Geoffrey Wood, Beata Mtyingizana, Michael Brookes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


This article provides a critical review of the nature and state of union organization in Mozambique, based on a survey of employees in the country™s two principal urban centres, Maputo and Beira. The findings of the survey underscore the point that the ability of unions to retain a physical presence in adverse circumstances does not necessarily represent a reflection of union strength. Whilst retaining a residual presence in many workplaces, Mozambican unions have battled to cope with changes in the external labour market and a greatly altered political climate. In most cases, they have proved equally incapable of challenging the authority of management and of articulating viable alternatives to the neo-liberal orthodoxy. There is a vital need to enhance the quality of unionism and the service provided at existing workplaces, and reconcile the needs of very different groupings of workers, not only within Mozambique, but across the continent; African unions can no longer count on the patronage of governments or on favourable market conditions within specific sectors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)257-278
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Industrial Relations
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • African labour movements
  • Mozambique
  • union renewal
  • union strength
  • workplace industrial relations


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