DAR ES SALAAM: TANZANIA National Business Council (TNBC) through its Working Group of Agriculture has reset recommendations meant to address challenges that were frustrating growth of agriculture, saying the sector stood a better chance of attracting more funding and increasing production.
Speaking shortly after the Group members meeting in Dar es Salaam over the weekend, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, Mr Gerald Mweli, who also doubles as the Group Chairman, said the recommendations were viewed as healthier and suitable for the sector growth and development.
“The sixth phase government under the stewardship of President Dr Samia Suluhu Hassan has put in place a conducive and enabling environment in agriculture sector including issuance of loans and subsidies,” Mr Mweli said.
He said the government has been working on opinions of stakeholders and experts on how best the sector could be pushed forward and have a significant contribution to the national economy and also multiplier effects to its players.
Mr Mweli called on continued and sustainable cooperation of private and public sectors, saying that through the cooperation more challenges could be spotted and given solution for the betterment of the sector growth.
He said the recommendations floated by his working group among others would be discussed at the higher of TNBC, since the motive behind was to build an inclusive, stable and sustainable sector contributing greatly to the country’s economy.
“President Samia Suluhu Hassan’s Administration was highly committed to see agriculture contributes dearly into the government coffers yet raise economic status of many Tanzanians relying heavily in agriculture,” Mr Mweli said.
Speaking at the same occasion, TNBC Executive Secretary, Dr Goodwill Wanga said the Council through the working group came up with solid recommendations which would be instrumental for improving business environment in agriculture sector.
“It is no secret that every Tanzanian can witness how the government has been working very closely with the private sector. TNBC eight working groups have helped a lot in looking at enabling environment of policies, laws and regulations,” Dr Wanga said.
Dr Wanga said one of the recommendations was to complete the formulation of the ‘Master Plan’ of Agriculture that will incorporate policy, laws and regulations with view to enabling the sector’s contributions in the national economy.
“We have agreed to help increase the value of agricultural crops before they are exported to enable the country earning foreign currencies,” Dr Wanga said.
Earlier, a member of the Group from Tanzania Private Sector Foundation (TPSF), Ms Mercy Sila said the private sector was happier to work with public sector than it was a case before, commending achievements reached in agriculture sector.
“I take this opportunity to congratulate the Sixth Phase Government for taking deliberate measures and priority for Agriculture. For instance, the Government budget allocation to the Ministry of Agriculture has risen from billion 294/- for the year 2020/21 to billion 970/- in 2023/4,” Ms Sila explained.
According to Ms Sila, the budget allocation increase to the Ministry of Agriculture was equivalent to 230 per cent which attested the government commitment towards reviving the sector deemed to be the backbone of the economy.