THE government has directed Export and Processing Zones Authority (EPZA) to focus on establishing new Industrial Parks as way to attract more investors in the industrial sector.
The directive was issued on Tuesday in Dar es Salaam by the Minister for Trade and Industry, Geoffrey Mwambe, while addressing EZPA Board and management during his familiarization tour at their premises.
“The EPZA should focus on constructing more industrial parks in every region, because they are ideal catalyst for industrialization and economic development,” he said, adding that EPZA must direct its efforts in developing infrastructure for industrial parks and leave investors’ facilitation and promotion to Tanzania Investment Centre (TIC).
Mr Mwambe noted further that the industrial parks will help put into place an infrastructure that fosters and attracts local and foreign investors of all sizes into the sites.
To date, the country has only the Benjamin William Mkapa Special Economic Zone (BWM- SEZ) in Dar es Salaam that hosts more than eight industries instead of intended 20.
For example, the authority must immediately put into effect and develop cashew nut processing area in Mtwara Region and a polishing tanzanite plant in Arusha Region to enhance the value of the products and fetch high returns.
The EPZA management was also instructed to collect debts, where so far more than 3bn/- from tenants in Mtwara Special Economic Zone alone still remain uncollected.
He said there are already areas identified and owned by the EPZA in almost every region, but not yet developed, hence, holding back efforts in attracting more investments in the industrial sector.
The minister noted that EPZA should use internal sources to start putting infrastructure for the development of industrial parks, adding that the government will be complementing their efforts.