TANZANIA-EU BUSINESS FORUM: Here are investment fortunes

THE Vice-President, Dr Philip Mpango, has wooed investors from the 27 member states of the European Union (EU) to explore untapped investment and business opportunities which are available in various sectors of the economy in Tanzania.

Speaking during the official opening of the maiden Tanzania-EU Business Forum in Dar es Salaam yesterday, Dr Mpango assured the European investors and businesspersons of conducive environment for trade and investment.

“Just last year, the government repelled the Investment Act of 1997 and enacted a new legislation which offers more incentives to strategic investors.

The VP cited some of potential areas of investments for foreign investors as agriculture and agro-processing for value addition of local farm produce,” Dr Mpango remarked during the forum which attracted about 700 delegates from Tanzania and EU member states.

“The government aims at ensuring that the agriculture sector grows by 10 per cent by the year 2030 and that is why we are now embarking on cluster farming by involving the youth. The aim is to make Tanzania a food basket in the region,” he stated.

Dr Mpango mentioned other potential areas for investments which have not been tapped to the fullest as tourism, energy, mining, real estate, transport and logistics, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in addition to livestock and leather industry.

“The GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of Tanzania is on recovering path after the Covid-19 pandemic and it is among the fastest growing economies in Sub-Saharan Africa.

“The government of Tanzania has a strong desire to attract foreign direct investments to tap its abundant natural resources. It is our hope that this business forum between EU member countries and Tanzania will boost and sustain trade and investment between the two parties” he urged.

The VP went on and assured the investors and businesspersons from Europe of reliable market of their products in Tanzania in addition to regional markets of about 177 million people in the East African Community (EAC) and over 300 million people in Southern African Development Community (SADC).

On the same note, Dr Mpango urged Tanzanian businesspersons to also explore and make best use of investment and trade opportunities in the EU member states.

Earlier, the Minister of Investment, Industry and Trade, Dr Ashatu Kijaji, said the business forum is aimed at showcasing Tanzania’s comparative advantage in investment and trade.

The Minister was upbeat that the Tanzania-EU Business Forum will intensify business and investment ties between the two parties.

Speaking during an introductory panel session, the Director for Sustainable Finance at the European Commission, Mr Antti Karhunen, pointed that Tanzania and European countries share longstanding relations in many areas.

“This forum will thus deliver concrete deals for trade and investment between the two parties. What is important is favourable regulatory and policy frameworks to facilitate business,” he stated.

The Ambassador of Tanzania in Belgium and EU, Mr Jestas Nyamanga, emphasised the role of economic diplomacy in advancement of trade and investment.

“This business forum will play an important role in linking businesspersons and investors to markets,” he noted, adding further that 115 projects with a combined value of 471.9 million Euros from EU countries were registered in Tanzania last year.

For his part, the Vice-Chairperson of Tanzania Private sector Foundation (TPSF), Mr Paul Makanza, urged EU countries to diversify their value chains in Tanzania.

“We need skills and technology as well as access to finance on bankable projects to enable us to access markets in EU countries,” he observed.

Zanzibar’s Minister of State in the President’s Office (Economy, Labour and Investment), Mr Mudrick Soragha, said the Revolutionary Government of Zanzibar has amended a number of legislations to facilitate investments through Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs).

The Minister noted further that the government in the isles has undertaken major transformation in service delivery to allow investors to access and make applications for registration of investments online.

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