The VP gave the directives yesterday when visiting Mtwara port as part of his five-day tour in the region.
He said the decisions would stimulate trade and development in the southern part of the country, with agricultural inputs and insecticides used in cashewnut cultivation being transported through the port.
“Mtwara port is a strategic terminal where the government has invested a lot of funds to improve its infrastructure to ensure optimal use given its strategic geographical location,” he stated.
The government wishes to enhance regional trade, stimulate economic growth and development using the port, thus the port must be used for the country to benefit from the huge investment, he further noted.
The Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) needs to work on customers’ complaints especially on the safety of their goods and properties by strengthening operational procedures and security.
“Port officials have a huge responsibility to supervise and evaluate the quality of services provided as well as looking for users locally and abroad. We want this port to attract more traders,” he declared.
TPA officials must conduct tours in various countries to search for potential users of the port, and consulting with Tanzanian embassies to promote services offered by the country’s ports, he stated.
The government spent 157.8bn/- for the strategic improvement of Mtwara port, increasing its cargo handling capacity to one million tonnes annually, he said, noting that port improvement also involved putting up additional equipment for containerization traffic and general cargo.
Earlier, the Minister for Works and Transport, Dr Leonard Chamuriho said Mtwara port has the capacity to serve small and large ships carrying cargoes of up to 65,000 tonnes, vowing to continue improving services to attract more traders to use the port.
Recently TPA announced that in implementing the government’s directive to ensure that cashew nuts are transported through Mtwara port, the agency has conducted major improvements at the port, including acquiring modern equipment to enhance efficiency, uplift staff competence and boost revenue collections.
TPA expects to make Mtwara port one of the busiest harbours serving traders and industrialists, while reviewing various levies to attract more transporters to use the port.