Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries advisor Prof David Nyange
on Tuesday cautioned African governments which have discovered oil and gas
to take precautionary measures to ensure that human capital does not
target the extractive industries only.
Speaking on the sidelines of a two-day Agribusiness Congress of East
Africa, being held in Dar es Salaam, Prof Nyange said that countries such
as Ghana, Mozambique, Tanzania and Uganda whose economies are
traditionally dominated by agriculture, stand high risk of ignoring this
The term ‘Dutch Disease’ was coined in 1977 by The Economist to refer to
the decline of the manufacturing sector in The Netherlands after the
discovery of the large Groningen natural gas fields in 1959.
Prof Nyange disclosed that discovery of such massive resources tends to
raise public expectations but unfortunately cannot automatically create
jobs or wealth.
“Oil and gas revenues could be invested in sectors with the potential to
promote broad-based growth such as agriculture and light manufacturing,”
He stressed that because 75 percent of the population is employed in the
agricultural sector, it is imperative that the sector gets massive
investments to help fight poverty.
Prof Nyange said despite the impressive macroeconomic performance and
overall economic growth for many years,the economy has not been all
inclusive, hence leaving a third of the population living below the
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, Dr
Florence Turuka said the government has taken various measures to enhance
domestic, regional as well as international trade in commodities including
Dr Turuka said Tanzanian farmers should take advantage of the available
market opportunities under bilateral and multilateral trade pacts.
He pointed out that policies and measures have been put in place to ensure
that imports of agricultural commodities do not discourage agribusiness
“As government, we recognized the potential that agriculture holds for
economic growth and poverty reduction. Small scale farmers are the largest
investors in agriculture, thus we have to embrace small scale farmers as
they are significant players in agribusiness,” the PS underlined.