Dodoma reaps increased exports to Kampala

Dodoma reaps increased exports to Kampala

TANZANIA’s exports to Uganda grew almost six folds in the last five years thanks to the two head of states push to remove trade barriers.

According Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA) data, during 2015/2016 the Dodoma exports to Kampala increased from just 111.7bn/- to a staggering 631.4bn/- in the year 2021.

Likewise, exports from Uganda to Tanzania increased from 43.8bn/- to 253.1bn/- during the same period under review.

The breakdown of the figures was unveiled by the Director of Directorate of Presidential Communications, Ms Zuhura Yunus, during a televised press briefing recently on President Samia Suluhu Hassan’s visits to Uganda and United States. 

The trade volume between the two countries which are member states of the East African Community (EAC) is set to intensify even further after President Samia and her Ugandan counterpart Yoweri Museveni, directed ministers to meet frequently to address trade barriers between the two countries.

To start with, Tanzania is set to import 10,000 tonnes of sugar from Uganda to plug the former’s production gap of sweetener.

What is more, resumption of marine transport across Lake Victoria from Mwanza port in Tanzania to Port Bell-Kampala is set to both increase trade volume and reduce costs and transit time.

A communiqué read after a meeting between the two leaders and other officials said that resumption of transport on the Lake Victoria has reduced transit time from Dar es Salaam to Kampala from nine to just four days.

During the two-day state visit in Uganda by President Samia last week, the two leaders also agreed that Tanzania will start purchasing anti-retroviral drugs from Kampala, signalling enhanced trade cooperation between the two friendly countries.

It was also agreed that health experts from both countries will jointly conduct research and develop vaccines for different diseases.

Also on the line of bilateral relations is the envisaged construction of a cross-border market at Mutukula which will not only boost trade between Tanzania and Uganda but improve incomes at household level for residents along the border.

President Samia took the opportunity in Kampala to woo Ugandan investors in Tanzania since the latter acts as a gateway to markets within the EAC as well as the Southern African Development Community (SADC) with a population of over 300 million people.  

Uganda is among land-linked countries which transport its exports and imports through the port of Dar es Salaam but Kampala has been complaining of what it described as exorbitant fees charges on Uganda bound cargo and fuel trucks.

As such, the two leaders agreed to lower charges on Uganda’s cargo tracks between Mutukula and Dar es Salaam to just 10 US dollars per 100 kilometres.

This translates to just 114 US dollars per trip between Mutukula and Dar es Salaam and vice-versa compared to 500 US dollars which was hitherto charged on Uganda-bound cargo and fuel trucks and bringing a relief to Ugandan exporters and importers.

What is more, the Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) has opened a liaison office in Kampala to facilitate smooth flow of exports and imports to and from Uganda through Dar es Salaam port along the Indian Ocean and Mwanza port on Lake Victoria.

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