MPs urging SIDO to innovate faster

16Feb 2021
Polycarp Machira
The Guardian
MPs urging SIDO to innovate faster

​​​​​​​MEMBERS of the Standing Committee on Industries, Trade and Environment of the National Assembly have called on the Small Industries Development Organization (SIDO) to enhance technology and innovation in service provision.

Eric Shigongo

They challenged SIDO to adopt modern technologies in its operations, increase innovation in nurturing small industries and thus help to create employment.

The committee’s deputy chairperson, Eric Shigongo (Buchosa) said at a familiarization seminar about SIDO and its activities, that the organization should put more efforts in research on making new equipment and machinery.

The organization ought to dwell on making simple modern machinery and take up innovation ideas from youth who do not have the capital to make their ideas work, he said.

“SIDO should adopt creativity and new technologies to help solve challenges facing young innovators,” the MP underlined, noting that the organization is well placed to support small industries.

Other members of the committee expressed views on how SIDO can improve its activities, including uplifting the role of information communication technology (ICT).

Industry and Trade deputy minister Exaud Kigahe responded to issues raised by the lawmakers, saying the government will continue empowering SIDO to improve its technological capacity and types of machines using new technology, to produce equipment that suit the current market.

 SIDO will continue building industrial shades in the regions with programmes aimed at enabling entrepreneurs establish industries at their areas, he stated..

SIDO has expanded its services and is now in every district countrywide, in an effort to help establish small industries and thus creating new jobs, he said.

SIDO Director General, Prof Sylvester Mpanduji, explained to the MPs that SIDO provides technical services and development of technology and industries, especially technology of processing strategic crops like cashew nuts, sunflower and refining palm oil,elaborating that SIDO is undertaking the task in its seven centers of Iringa, Mbeya, Lindi, Arusha, Moshi, Shinyanga and Kigoma.

SIDO also provides other services like nurturing innovative projects through technology, training and providing work within its premises, along with linking innovators with financial institutions, he said. 

In collaboration with the Tanzania Bureau of Standards (TBS), the Tanzania Medical Devices Authority (TMDA), the Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA) and the Government Procurement Services Agency (GPSA), SIDO provides entrepreneurial training in its regional offices, he stated.

SIDO also provides financial services to entrepreneurs with small industries through the National Entrepreneurship Development Fund (NEDF),  collateral control firm CGS, the trade credit reinsurance scheme established in collaboration of SIDO, NSSF, VETA, ABL freight company and NEEC.

SIDO in partnership with CRDB Bank provides loans to agro-processing industries, he stated, noting further that SIDO helped establish 4,410micro, 3,406 small and 460 medium industries from 2016/17 to 2019/20.

Big industries established with support of the organization include the Iringa based Dabaga, Mwanza Quality Wine, Tausi Coffee in Shinyanga and Mart Super Brand in Manyara, he added.