MINING stakeholders have welcomed the World Bank’s decision of elevating Tanzania’s status into a lower middleincome economy.
Speaking separately to this paper, key players in the lucrative industry lauded the move by the international financial institution, noting that it will steer the sector towards achieving even greater heights.
Expressing his sentiments, Tanzania Mineral Dealers’ Association (TAMIDA), Chairperson Sammy Mollel said it is delightful that the World Bank has acknowledged the economic strides registered by the fifth phase government, whereas the country was five years away from attaining the feat.
“The move has given our sector a real new meaning and value,” Mr Mollel remarked.
The TAMIDA chairperson was optimistic that WB’s decision will further catapult the sector to greater lengths.
He challenged fellow miners to capitalise on the “once in a blue moon” opportunity, especially in value addition.
“While we are all delighted that the mining sector had put Tanzania in the global limelight, the onus is on us to ensure that we become champions in processing and exporting our own precious gemstones to make them more appealing to the world,” he said.
Echoing similar sentiments, Federation of Miners Association of Tanzania (FEMATA) Secretary General, Mr Lister Balegele, described the move as music to the ears of all mining fraternity in the country.
He attributed the country’s feat to the hard work of artisanal miners in different mining fields around the country.
“Never had the sector contributed so dearly to the country’s income; This is a result of the good leadership of President Magufuli, who from the onset, wanted to transform this lucrative industry,” ex plained the FEMATA Secretary General.
Mr Balegele reserved special praise for Dr Magufuli for engaging small miners in transforming the sector. He cited the 2019 meeting the President had with the miners as a bold step of transforming the sector.
“We shared our grievances with him, and being a good listener, we were all delighted when he assured us that he will remove all the nuisance tax es which became stumbling blocks to miners,” he recalled.
The WB had on Tuesday classified the country as a lower middle-income economy in its latest country income classifications. Dr Magufuli couldn’t hide his delight over the news, saying it had arrived ‘earlier enough.’