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Tanzania should be more investor-friendly

Tanzania should be more investor-friendly

The investor, Nitori Company Limited of Japan, plans to manufacture furniture and ceramic ware under the Exports Processing Zones (EPZ) model.According to the investor, the manufactured products valued at 35 million US dollars (about 60bn/-), would be exported annually mainly to Europe and America and that over 500 jobs would be created.

This is good news indeed taking into account the country’s endless campaign for the past decade to local and foreign investors for new investments into the country. It’s on this backdrop that the move by the Japanese investor deserves a big salute.

The Bank of Tanzania (BoT) statistics show that manufactured goods contributed 22.5 per cent share to total non-traditional exports in the year ending February this year.Some of the manufactured goods, which dominated the country’s exports in the region included cement, textile apparels, edible oil, plastic items, iron and steel products, wheat flour and paper products.

Total exports value of goods and services were $6,851.9 million (10.9tri/-) compared to $6,112.8 million (9.8tri/-) recorded during the year ending February 2011. The improvement was largely on account of increase in gold exports and travel receipts.

So, this is to say that the manufacturing sector has been performing very well in the past few years despite a number of problems such as poor infrastructure, unreliable power supply and lack of competent labour force.

However, a lot is to be done to improve the country’s investment climate. There are still unnecessary bottlenecks which frustrate investors. These include cumbersome procedures in registering a company, opening a bank account and more importantly tax clearance by the Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA).

The government must take deliberate measures to allocate enough land and build factories under the EPZA system to enable investors start production immediately after getting clearance to operate.This will attract more investors who want to see a quick return on their investments as well as growth in their businesses.Such campaigns to investors must go in tandem with improvement of the business climate.

 

 

Transparency is the way forward

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Author: EDITOR

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