Maputo, officially named Lourenço Marques until 1976, is the capital and most populous city of Mozambique. The city is named after chief Maputsu I of the Tembe clan, a subgroup of the Tsonga people. It is located near the southern end of the country. The Maputo metropolitan area includes the neighbouring city of Matola. Maputo is a port city, with an economy centered on commerce. It is also noted for its vibrant cultural scene and distinctive, eclectic architecture. Maputo is situated on a large natural bay on the Indian Ocean, near where the rivers Tembe, Mbuluzi, Matola and Infulene converge. The city consists of seven administrative divisions, which are each subdivided into quarters or bairros. The city is surrounded by Maputo Province, but is administered as a self-contained, separate province. Maputo City is the geographically smallest and most densely populated province in Mozambique. Maputo is a cosmopolitan city, with Bantu, Tsonga languages being more common, Portuguese, and, to a lesser extent, Arabic, Indian, and Chinese languages and cultures present. The area on which Maputo stands was first settled as a fishing village by ancient Tsonga people. It was soon named Lourenço Marques, after the navigator of the same name who explored the area in 1544. The modern city traces its origins to a Portuguese fort established on the site in 1781. A town grew around the fort starting around 1850, and in 1877 it was elevated to city status. In 1898, the colony of Portuguese Mozambique relocated its capital there. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Lourenço Marques grew both in population and economic development as a port city.
Maputo is rated Gamma - by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network (GaWC) which evaluates and ranks the relationships between world cities in the context of globalisation. Gamma level cities are cities that link smaller economic regions into the world economy.
Maputo has a population of over 1,032,197 people. Maputo also forms part of the wider Maputo metropolitan area which has a population of over 2,717,437 people.
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