Maputo, 1 Aug (AIM) – The Mozambican Transport Ministry is proposing to change working hours in the Greater Maputo Metropolitan Area in order to stagger the rush hour and improve mobility.
According to a report in Tuesday’s issue of the independent daily “O Pais”, the main proposal is that working hours for most of the public administration should run from 08.30 to 16.30, rather than the current hours of 07.30 to 15.30.
The private sector in Maputo currently works from 07.30 to 12.00, has a two hour break, and then works from 14.00 to 17.00. The new proposal seeks to scrap the two hour break. The working day would run from 08.00 to 17.00.
Under the Transport Ministry proposal, health units would work from 06.30 to 17.00, instead of from 07.30 to 15.30.
Banks and insurance companies which currently work from 08.00 to 15.30 would instead operate from 09.00 to 17.00.
The other sectors covered by the Government’s proposal are large supermarkets, wholesale trade, retail trade, municipal markets, schools and universities.
According to the proposal, the change in working hours could lead to a decline in passengers of 55,000 in the morning rush hour, which might make a significant difference to Maputo’s congested roads.
At this stage, the proposal is that the new schedule be tested only in the Greater Maputo Metropolitan Area.
“The objectives of this measure are to reduce the peak period, especially the morning peak; reduce overcrowding of vehicles, and increase speed on the roads, which will have an impact on the reduction of operating costs; reducing congestion, stress and accidents. It will reduce waiting time for transport at peak hours”, says the Ministry document.
The proposal for the new working hours was supposed to be discussed on Monday by the Consultative Labor Commission (CCT), a consultative body that brings together the Government, the trade unions and the employers. However, the discussion has been postponed.