Investment centre sheds light on achievements, challenges

06Dec 2018
Henry Mwangonde
The Guardian
Investment centre sheds light on achievements, challenges

THE Tanzania Investment Centre (TIC) announced yesterday that it has registered 903 projects worth US$13.2 billion since President John Magufuli assumed power three years ago.

Tanzania Investment Centre executive director Geoffrey Mwambe (L) updates journalists in Dar es Salaam yesterday on developments in the country’s investment since President John Magufuli assumed office three years ago. Photo: John Badi

TIC executive director Geoffrey Mwambe said 307 of the projects belong to Tanzanians, 319 belong to foreign nationals and 277 are ventures run jointly by Tanzanians and foreigners.

He gave the details at a press conference in Dar es Salaam he used to elaborate on the headway the centre has made since late 2015, saying the big number of joint ventures registered was enough proof that Tanzanians are trusted.

“For large foreign companies to come and invest here there must be enough cooperation from the country’s top leadership, journalists, politicians and Tanzanians at large. This means that, as a nation, we must sing the same song – which revolves around the industrialisation agenda,” said Mwambe.

He attributed the achievements the centre has made to various initiatives, among them President Magufuli’s efforts to combat corruption, ease bureaucracy in the public service and ensure proper implementation of the national five-year development plan.

The TIC boss noted that the government has seriously embarked on investing in railway and other physical infrastructure and revamping the national airline, “which should appreciably improve our capacity to woo and transport tourists from across the globe”.

“President Magufuli has successfully overseen the implementation of the national development plan, which places a premium on industrialisation by linking agriculture with industries – as the latter sector is easily the main market for our farm products,” he said.

Mwambe said TIC has benefited immensely and in a wide range of ways from government activities, including the mega projects now under implementation, adding that a major task for the centre was to ensure that the country became more increasingly investment-friendly.

He confessed to the fact that “there are serious problems relating to people out there not being conversant enough with the way our centre operates”.

Accordingly, he hinted on amendments expected to be made to the 1997 Act under which TIC was established, saying “the centre is facing several operational challenges closely linked to the nature of the law now in use”.

He hinted that key changes to be made to the law would likely include allowing TIC to register all investments in the country. Currently, the centre does not register minerals and gas-related investments.

Despite the challenges and setbacks, Mwambe said, Tanzania was still leading in Foreign Direct Investments in the East African region – standing at $1.1 billion, followed by Uganda with about $600 million.