Dar’s Foreign Policy review underway

TANZANIA has started reviewing its 2001 Foreign Policy as the East African nation looks to cement further implementation of economic diplomacy.

This was revealed by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation Dr Stergomena Tax during her first briefing with members of the diplomatic corps and international originations residing in the country on Wednesday.

The minister said economic diplomacy will be put at the centre of the new policy, given a number of transformations that have been recorded since 2001 when the current foreign policy came into effect.

“We are in the process of reviewing our foreign policy of 2001, we expect to have a new policy by the end of this year and the on-going review has put economic diplomacy at a centre stage,” she said.

Dr Tax assured diplomats and members of the international community that Tanzania’s multilateral cooperation remains at the heart of its diplomatic engagements.

According to her, a number of successes were registered in the past one year through a wide range of engagements done through Joint Permanent Commissions (JPCs), Joint Commission for Cooperation (JCC), Business Forums, Expos, High-Level meetings as well as official and working visits.

“As a result of those meetings and forums, a number of agreements and Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) were signed as well as witnessing bilateral dialogue that brought solutions to long-standing challenges, such as the Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) between countries,” said the minister.

She emphasised that Tanzania bilateral engagements have been significantly enhanced through official and working visits that President Dr Samia Suluhu Hassan held to various countries within and outside the African continent.

She further assured heads of diplomatic missions and International Organisations that Tanzania is keen on deepening cooperation across all sectors and will continue collaborating with all the foreign missions for mutual benefits.

In November last year, President Samia underlined the need to review the country’s foreign policy for it to keep pace with the ongoing political, social and economic changes in the world.

Dr Samia issued the directive when she met all the 45 Tanzanian ambassadors serving abroad, at a meeting aimed at sharing their experience, challenges they are facing as well as discussing a way forward in tackling the setbacks.

President Samia said that the country needs to take a new direction in strengthening economic diplomacy which will reflect and adapt the changes taking place in the country and the world at large.

“The world economy has changed rapidly in the last decade …our foreign policy was launched 20 years ago while the last meeting for diplomats was held in 2019. We need this kind of meeting to see how we can accommodate the changes in our national foreign policy,” said Dr Samia.

“This session gives us time to reflect on various issues, including new security threats and well-being of our country, health and industrial revolution among others,” she added.

She said other issues which also need to be discussed include global politics and emerging conflicts of interest between giant nations which have negatively affected the prices of energy, food and currency around the world.

The president further noted that the world is also witnessing changes in the direction of the global economy, where major economic activities including production, investment, trade, creativity and innovation have moved to Asia, which currently produces about 40 per cent of the world’s output.

“It is good for us to discuss how we can compete and how we can benefit,” she said.

Speaking to Dr Tax on Wednesday on behalf of other diplomats, the Dean of Diplomatic Corps and Ambassador of the Comoro to Tanzania, Dr Ahmada El Badaoui Mohamed assured their commitment to work closely with the government in pushing forward development agenda for mutual benefits.

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