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The purpose of this report is to provide a brief introduction to the civil registration and vital statistics (CRVS) systems in Mozambique.

The information was collected through a questionnaire completed by the National Directorate of Registries and Notary in December 2018 and supplemented by a desk review of available documents. The report presents country background, selected indicators relevant for CRVS improvement processes, stakeholders’ activities as well as resources available and needed to strengthen CRVS systems, coordination, among others.

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Disclaimer: The boundaries and names shown and the designations used on this map do not imply official endorsement or acceptance by the United Nations.

Country profile

Mozambique is a large country in eastern Africa bordered by the Atlantic Ocean, Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zimbabwe, South Africa and Eswatini (formerly known as Swaziland).  Mozambique has eleven provinces (provincias), including Maputo City which has a provincial status.

Mozambique is divided into two topographical regions by the Zambezi River. To the north of the Zambezi River, lies the narrow coastal strip, the inland hills and low plateaus, while and rugged highlands are to the west. To the south of the Zambezi River, are found the lowlands with the Mashonaland plateau and Lebombo Mountains.








Capital City
Maputo City
Official working language(s)
Ministry responsible for civil registration
Ministry responsible for civil registration
Ministry of Justice, Constitutional Affairs and Religions
Civil registration agency
National Directorate of Registries and Notaries
National statistical office
National Institute of Statistics (INE)

CRVS Dimensions


Completeness of birth registration N/A
Children under 5 whose births were registered




Births attended by skilled health professionals




Women aged 15-49 who received antenatal care from a skilled provider


DPT1 immunization coverage among 1-year-olds




Crude birth rate (per 1,000 population)




Total fertility rate (live births per woman)




Adolescent fertility rate (per 1,000 girls aged 15-19 years)




Population under age 15






Completeness of death registration N/A
Crude death rate (per 1,000 population)




Infant mortality rate (probability of dying by age 1 per 1,000 live births)




Under five mortality rate (probability of dying by age 5 per 1,000 live births)




Maternal mortality ratio (per 100,000 live births)





Marriages and divorces

Marriage registration rate N/A
Women aged 20-24 first married or in union before age 15




Women aged 20-24 first married or in union before age 18




Divorce registration rate N/A

Vital statistics including causes of death data

Compilation and dissemination of CR-based statistics N/A
Medically certified causes of death data N/A

Civil registration system

Legislative Framework

The Government of Mozambique revised existing civil registration law and the Civil Registration Code 12/2018 issued on December 4, 2018. The law came into force the same year. The new Code provides the legislative framework for registering births, marriages, divorces, deaths and adoption. The law is aligned to international recommendations and practices as it makes registration of vital events mandatory. It is also universal as it covers the entire territory of the country and all population groups, including refugees and stateless persons.

The revised legal framework requires community leaders and health personnel to notify the occurrence of births and deaths. It also provides conducive environment for the introduction and use of technologies, such as SMS technology for notifications and at the registration centres and the generation of a Single Citizen’s Identification Number.

Management, organizations and operations

National CRVS systems coordination mechanisms

The Inter-institutional Working Group for Improving Information on Civil Registration and Vital Statistics (GITEV) was formed in 2013 to coordinate and collaborate on the implementation of a comprehensive assessment exercise and prepare a strategic plan for the improvement of CRVS systems. GITEV has continued to be operational to the present. Membership is made up of the Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Health, National Institute of Statistics, Ministry of State Administration and Public Functions, Ministry of Interior, Mozambican Open Archives, Standards and Information Systems, University of Eduardo Mondlane, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).  In 2017, a memorandum of understanding was signed by government institutes which are members of GITEV to serve as terms of reference for the coordination of CRVS activities. 

Administrative level registration centres

The civil registration activity is decentralized. The country is divided into provinces, district and administrative posts or villages.  There are one or more Registration Offices or Conservatories in each district. Under each Conservatory in a province or district, there could be 4 to 5 Civil Registration Posts (Postos).  The lowest administrative units where registration of vital events is conducted is in an Administrative Post. There is a total of 509 Administrative Posts in the country, of which 164 are classified as urban and 345 are in rural areas. Civil registration posts also operate in some of the big health facilities.

Accessibility of civil registration services

In most part of the country, the nearest household in a village is on average one kilometre from the Civil Registration Posts, while the furthest household is about 5 kilometres away. In terms of walking time, this would translate into 1 to 4 hours for a person to reach the Civil Registration Post, depending on how far the person is within the boundary of a village. It is estimated that service seekers would take less than an hour to reach any of the registration posts by car or motorcycle10 . However, in some part of the country the furthest household could be as far as 100 kilometres,  meaning accessibility to registration posts is a big challenge in such areas.

Registration of vital events

This section provides some of the highlights in the registration process.

  • Registration of birth, death, adoption, marriage and divorce is compulsory by law.
  • Definitions of live births and deaths are aligned to international recommendations.
  • Conservatories (registration centres) use a bound booklet form for each vital event.  This however is changing as the country is implementing IT solutions in a phased manner.
  • There is no fee for registering births and deaths if conducted within the legally stipulated time.  A fee is charged for issuing vital events certificates.

Table 1: Direct costs associated to registration and certification of vital events

Vital event

Fee for registration

Cost of registration in US Dollars and local currency








USD 0.79 (50 Mts) is paid if birth is not registered within 120 days




USD 0.79 (50 Mts)





USD 0.79 (50 Mts)






If there is property left by the deceased, 50 Mt is paid


Fee for certificates








USD 0.79 (50 Mts)

Full narrative certificate




USD 0.79 (50 Mts)

Full narrative certificate




USD 0.79 (50 Mts)

Full narrative certificate




USD 0.79 (50 Mts)

Full narrative certificate

Note: 1 Metical (Mts) is about 0.016 US dollars on May 15, 2019

Backlog of unregistered births

Several measures have been taken to reduce the backlogs of unregistered births in Mozambique since 2006. Some of these are:

  • Mobile Brigades was re-established after the war in rural and urban areas to register children and adults; and
  • Joint actions such as the inclusion of registration of children during national vaccination campaigns (National Health Weeks).

Interface with other sectors and operations

As part of its e-Governance initiative, Mozambique is in the process of instituting a modernized civil registration system that documents all vital events. A Unique Identification Number is being used for birth and the other live events of a person. This would enable easy linkages of CRVS systems to ID management and other systems and paves the way for interoperability with the health sector and the National Institute of Statistics. 

Vital statistics system

The National Institute of Statistics is responsible for collecting, compiling and disseminating vital statistics from different sources, including civil registration. The new Civil Code stipulates that information collected on births and deaths, including causes of death, be shared with the National Institute of Statistics.

The Institute of has a Directorate of Demographic, Vital and Social Statistics, whose responsibility is to collect, compile and disseminate vital statistics, including causes of death from civil registration, censuses and sample surveys. However, the directorate has not started to compile CR-based vital statistics in earnest.

UNFPA and UNICEF are supporting INE in strengthening its capacity to produce regular vital statistics reports from the civil registration system. Canada has provided US 75,000 in 2018 to support INE’s capacity to produce civil registration-based vital statistics.




Causes of death

Causes of death is collected for deaths occurring in health facilities and coded according to the International Classification of Diseases 10 (ICD10) format. Verbal autopsies are being used for natural deaths occurring in the communities, however the practice is still at a lower level and is being scaled up. The police use forensic medicine to collect cause of death information for unnatural deaths.  Currently, there are no cause of death statistics compiled and published.



The Ministry of Justice, Constitutional and Religious Affairs is introducing an electronic Civil Registration and Vital Statistics (eCRVS) system - - to improve service delivery to the public. All local registration offices or posts in the country will use computers to register vital events. As of October 2018, births and deaths are registered and certificates processed electronically using the eCRVS platform at 74 conservatories and 120 registration posts throughout the country. Electronic media (internet, CDs and flash discs/sticks) are used to transfer civil registration information from the local registration offices to the next higher-level registration offices.

The new law has facilitated the removal of geographical boundaries such that registration services can be accessed in any part of the country regardless of where the birth or death occurred. The eCRVS has made implementation easier.

Mobile technology application

Mobile technology is used for notification of the occurrence of births and deaths. SMS texts are used to obtain the unique identification numbers when access to the Internet is weak or not available. Mobile technology also allows the public to follow the stages of the registration request processing by the civil registration agency by calling Civil Registration Call Centres.

Sample registration forms

Improvement initiatives and external support

Improvement plan and budget

Strategic plan

A comprehensive assessment was conducted in 2013. A Strategic plan for the period 2014 to 2019 was first drafted in 2014 using the outcomes of the comprehensive assessment. This draft is currently being revised with support from UNICEF.  

Budgetary allocations and requirements

Information not available.

Activities identified in the national plan as high priorities but lack funding

  • Digitization of historical records
  • Increasing registration posts

Support from development partners

The development partners that provided and continue to support the civil registration and vital statistics systems improvement initiative are listed below.


Financial and technical support, with particular focus on birth registration

World Bank / GFF

Financial support to improve death registration and recording of causes of death for facility deaths

World Bank / Global Funding Facility (GFF)

Financial support

Global Affairs Canada

Digitizing of historical records

Italian Agency for Development Cooperation
Save the Children

Communication and Advocacy

Save the Children

Proposals to improve coordination

Coordination among key stakeholders is critical for the success of any CRVS improvement initiative. In this regard, the National Directorate of Registries and Notaries has provided the following suggestions to improve coordination efforts.

National CRVS stakeholders

  1. Ensure that the principles and concepts of CRVS is understood by key stakeholders as a matter of priority.
  2. Finalize the strategic plan and ensure compliance with the actions outlined.
  3. Secure increased government commitment by allocating funding to implement major CRVS systems activities.

National institutes and development partners

  1. Ensure the functioning of the existing Technical Working Group, with tasks clearly identified and delineated;
  2. Establish a mechanism for joint monitoring of activities; and
  3. Improve communication at the level of the sectors involved in CRVS initiatives and development partners.


Additional Materials


Additional materials

Most of the research works listed below are results of an Internet search. They are all in Portuguese.

Adelino Benedito Nhancale <nd>. O sistema de informação sobre estatísticas vitais em Moçambique: passado recente e desafios a prazo. A adaptação do modelo português à realidade moçambicana.

Catique, Lucas Eugénio (2017). Papel das Cartas de Serviços na Prestação de Serviços Públicos de Registo Civil: o caso da 1ª, 2ª e 3ª Conservatórias do Registo Civil de Maputo. 2012-2017.

Demographic and Health Survey (2015). Ministério da Saúde Instituto Nacional de Estatística (2018). Inquérito de Indicadores de Imunização, Malária e HIV/SIDA. February 2018.

Esperança Pascoal Nhangumbe (2013). Apoio Ao Processo De Avaliação Do Registo Civil E Estatísticas Vitais Em Moçambique

Hosea Mitala (2015). Accelerating Results for Children by Digitizing Civil Regfistration and Vital Statistics Systems in Mozambique.

Ministério da Justiça, Ministério da Saúde, Instituto Nacional de Estatística e Universidade Eduardo Mondlane Grupo interinstitucional de trabalho para Melhoramento de informação do Registo Civil e Estatísticas Vitais (2014). Sistema de Registo Civil e Estatísticas Vitais de Moçambique Relatório de Avaliação do Registo de Óbitos e Causas de Morte.

Ministério Da Saúde (2012). Análise Da Mortalidade Nacional Intra-Hospitalar Moçambique. Sistema de Informação de Saúde-Registo de Óbitos Hospitalares (SIS-ROH) Análise de 3 anos - 2009-2011



  • 1National Institute of Statistics (NIS)- - FINALApuramento_Preliminar–
  • 2National Institute of Statistics. Population and Housing Census of 2017 - FINALApuramento_Preliminar–
  • 3United Nations (2018). Demographic Yearbook - 2017. ST/ESA/STAT/SER.R/47
  • 4abcd Ministry of Health. Ministerio da Saude (MISAU), Instituto Nacional de Estatística (INE) e ICF International (ICFI). Moçambique Inquérito Demográfico e de Saúde 2011. Calverton, Maryland, USA: MISAU, INE e ICFI.
  • 5abcd UNICEF. 2017. The State of World’s Children 2017.
  • 6World Bank. 2017. Adolescent Fertility Rate.
  • 7United Nations. 2017. World Population Prospect - 2017 revision. Volume II: Demographic Profiles.
  • 8UNICEF. 2017. The State of World’s Children 2017.
  • 9ab United Nations Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation (2018). UN IGME Total Under-5 Mortality Rate, Infant Mortality Rate and Neonatal mortality database 2018.
  • 10Distance and walking times estimates provided by National Directorate of Registries and Notary.