The manufacturing sector in Mozambique is fairly incipient. It currently contributes about 9% to GDP and 0.8% to employment. It has shown stronger growth in the last few years: average growth rate of 5.1% between 2013 and 2015 with a high of 8.5% in 2015, higher than the GDP growth rate of 6.6%. The sector is mainly comprised of micro companies, with few small- and medium-sized firms and are mainly involved with low technology intensity. Large firms are mostly dominated by foreign companies and are generally more capital intensive.
Significant subsectors are metals, chemicals, construction, industrial products and services, forestry, paper and packaging sectors, textiles, paint, soap, food and drink products, furniture and wood products, leather and shoes.
Like the agriculture sector, manufacturing faces a number of challenges such as competition with South African imports, unreliable electricity and a costly and bureaucratic business environment. As much of the production in the sector involves imports, i.e. most manufacturing companies process imported goods (e.g. by processing imported steel coil to make roof sheets) or require imported complementary goods such as packaging, products processed domestically are often more expensive than imports.