The European Union and Tanzania have signed a 4.5m euro agreement for the 10th European Development Fund support to trade and agriculture in Tanzania.
A statement issued by EU in Dar es Salaam said the agreement signed recently aims at providing support to Tanzania on key commodities which offer opportunities for pro-poor trade, such as fisheries, cotton, coffee, tea and horticulture.
In line with the recently adopted Tanzania Horticulture Development Strategy 2012-2020, the support to the horticulture sector will aim to increase smallholder farmers' income through better access to markets (national, regional and international markets), strengthening value chain linking smallholder farmers to markets, the statement said.
The statement said the support to the horticulture sector is to be implemented through a call for proposals.
The EU Ambassador to Tanzania, Filiberto Ceriani Sebregondi said: "The present support will contribute to the development of the horticultural industry, increasing production income generation and consumption of fresh horticultural produce in Tanzania," adding: "By fully exploiting the potential of the sector, it can contribute to improving nutritional status and poverty alleviation."
According to him, the projects to be supported should be demand-driven from horticulture stakeholders to exploit fast growing demand and market opportunities available in the national, regional and international markets, but should also contribute to a long term goal of strengthening capacity of the sector.
For his part the Deputy National Authorising Officer for European Development Fund (EDF), Samuel Marwa expressed Tanzania's appreciation to the EU and its member states for the support.
"The government appreciates the timely decision by the European Union and its member states to allocate funds for financing the horticultural sub-sector in Tanzania. This support has come at the right time given the challenges being faced by the horticulture sub-sector."