Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on Thursday, February 23, 2023.
Tanzania-EU Business Forum kicks off as Mpango woos European investors
Vice President Philip Mpango on Thursday officiated the Tanzania-European Union Business Forum at the Julius Nyerere International Convention Centre (JNICC), where he assured EU investors of Tanzania’s commitment to improving the business environment for the benefit of both.
The first-ever two-day event has reportedly attracted over 700 participants from Tanzania Mainland, Zanzibar, and the European Union. In addition, investors from all 27 member states of the EU are taking part in the event alongside over 150 local investors.
The forum aims to identify areas where the expertise of the EU business community can accompany Tanzania in delivering its economic priorities.
While officiating the forum, Dr Mpango told prospective EU investors that Tanzania is now focused on building a vibrant economy underpinned by the 4Rs philosophy of President Samia Suluhu Hassan – reforms, reconciliation, resilience, and rebuilding – noting that foreign investment is vital to realizing that goal.
Mpango, who served as the finance and planning minister during the previous administration, pointed out that the government is dedicated to consolidating policy, institutional, and regulatory reforms to improve the business reform in Tanzania.
“The reforms seek to promote consistency and predictability of policies, laws, and regulations,” Dr Mpango told the forum’s participants. “They also aim at enhancing transparency, address red-tape and other related bottlenecks to trade and investment.”
Full story here.
Govt, EU institutions sign MoUs worth Sh850b at Tanzania-EU Business Forum
Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) worth Sh849.98 billion were signed on Thursday between the government of Tanzania and European Union (EU) institutions at the ongoing Tanzania-EU Business Forum.
The two-day forum is taking place at the Mwalimu Julius Nyerere International Convention Centre (JNICC) and was inaugurated today, February 23, 2023, by Vice President Philip Mpango.
Over 700 delegates are participating in the forum, including potential investors from 27 member states of the EU and over 150 local investors, organisers said Thursday.
The signed MoUs are the Air Service Agreement between the Government of France and the Tanzania Civil Aviation Agency; an MoU between the Port of Antwerp-Bruges International and Tanzania Ports Authority; the KAKONO – investment for construction of the new hydro-power plant in Kagera region; and an announcement by Knauf Gypsum Tanzania Limited Company to triple their production in the country to EUR47 million by 2025.
Full story here.
Tanzania, IMF reach staff-level agreement on a US$151 million loan
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Thursday announced that it has reached a staff-level agreement with Tanzania on the first review of the Extended Credit Facility (ECF), which upon approval by the fund’s Executive Board will enable Dodoma to have access to about US$151 million loan.
If Tanzania secures the funding, that will bring the total IMF financial support to Tanzania under the arrangement to about US$302.7 million, the fund added in a statement on Thursday.
IMF mission spent two weeks in Dodoma and Dar es Salaam from February 8 to February 23, 2023, where it met with Minister of Finance and Planning Mwigulu Nchemba, Bank of Tanzania Governor Emmanuel Tutuba, other senior officials, development partners, and private sector representatives.
In a statement, IMF’s Deputy Chief of the Eastern II Division in the fund’s African Department Charalambos Tsangarides said Tanzania’s economy is benefitting from improvements in the business environment, but warned that it would continue facing spillovers of the war in Ukraine in the near term.
The mission noted that economic growth is projected at 5.2 per cent in 2023 and inflation is expected to surpass the BoT’s target of 5 per cent and reach about 5.3 per cent by the end of the current fiscal year. The current account deficit is projected to remain elevated in 2023 amid the uncertain global environment, the mission noted.
IMF reported that the Tanzanian shilling remained stable against the US dollar since last year, depreciating only by 0.6 per cent (year-on-year) by end-2022.
At the same time, the real effective exchange rate appreciated by about 3.7 per cent (year-on-year) at end-December 2022. The level of gross international reserves declined during 2022 by US$1.2 billion to US$5.2 billion (about 4.3 months of imports) in December 2022.
“In the near-term, temporary fiscal support should continue to safeguard the economy from spillovers of the war in Ukraine,” the mission suggested. “Monetary policy will continue to be tuned to developments in actual and expected inflation while allowing exchange rate flexibility to cushion the economy against external shocks.”
While in Tanzania, the IMF mission also conducted the 2023 Article IV Consultation with the government.
LSF releases Sh3.1b to partners to expand access to justice
The Legal Services Facility (LSF) announced on Thursday that it has issued Sh3.1 billion to its partners in Tanzania as part of its project to facilitate legal empowerment among ordinary citizens, especially women and children.
The partners include paralegal organizations, six zonal mentor organizations (ZMOs) and other legal aid entities implementing projects within its thematic area of access to justice.
The six organizations that will benefit from this grant will oversee some 92 paralegal organizations in six zones around the country in a deliberate bid to improve their quality, capacity and organizational efficiency in the provision of quality legal aid services in 2023, said a statement released yesterday.
Out of the entire grant, Sh2.08 billion has been issued directly to 184 legal aid providers and paralegal organizations across the mainland and in Zanzibar at regional and district levels to continue enhancing access to justice in the communities through free legal aid services.
LSF’s Executive Director Lulu Ng’wanakilala said that the grant facility also acts as a catalyst in implementing the newly-launched Mama Samia Legal Aid Campaign, which is invested in ensuring legal aid services benefit women and children.
“This will include providing communities with human rights education; fighting gender-based violence; resolving land and inheritance disputes; educating ordinary citizens on legal systems, and alternative dispute resolution mechanisms; and capacity building for legal aid stakeholders in the country,” the statement quoted Ng’wanakilala as saying.
A part of the grant has been specifically earmarked for the Kilimanjaro Women Information Exchange and Community Organization (KWIECO) towards implementing a project that places special focus on addressing conflicts through alternative dispute resolution (ADR).
Three organizations, Community Support Initiatives Tanzania (COSITA), Lindi Association of Non-Governmental Organizations (LANGO) and Civic Social Protection Foundation (CSP) which are implementing projects in agriculture, mining and the marine economy in Manyara and Lindi will also receive a part of the grant.
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