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Honorable Geofrey Idelfence Mwambe, Minister of State, Prime Minister’s Office- Investment launched Tabora Region Investment Guide on May 8th 2021 at Mtemi Isike Mwanakiyungi Conference Hall, Tabora Regional Commissioner’s Office. The ceremony was also attended by the Minister of State, Prime Minister’s Office in charge of Policy, Coordination, Parliament, Labor, Youth, Employment and the Disabled Hon. Jenista Mhagama; Minister of Livestock and Fisheries, Hon. Mashimba Ndaki and Deputy Minister for Agriculture Hon. Hussein Bashe. The Investment Guide was prepared by the Economic and Social Research Foundation (ESRF) in collaboration with Tabora Region and with the support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

Minister of State, Prime Minister’s Office- Investment, Hon. Geofrey Idelfence Mwambe launching the Tabora Region Investment Guide on 8th May 2021. The Regional Investment Guides are being prepared by ESRF under the auspices of UNDP

The event went in conjunction with the Trade and Business Exhibition. In his speech Honorable Hon. Geofrey Idelfence Mwambe thanked Dr. Philemon Sengati, Tabora regional Commissioner for inviting him to officiate the Investment Guide. He also appreciated the support given by UNDP and ESRF in developing regional investment guides. “The investment guide is an important tool that will help promote the opportunities available in the Tabora region to attract investors and help improve the economic situation of the people of this region and the nation as a whole,” said Hon. Mwambe.

Hon. Mwambe noted that on 1st July 2020, Tanzania graduated to middle income country with focus on industries. Tabora Region has the opportunity to contribute in elevating the economy of Tanzania by producing various raw materials, products and services for the domestic industries. He mentioned some of the opportunities available in Tabora in the areas of forestry, mining, livestock, tobacco farming, cotton, sunflower, and entrepreneurship activities. There are new opportunities emanating from the crude pipeline crossing the region from Uganda to Tanga, construction of Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), electrification through REA, concrete roads, water from Lake Victoria, and huge land suitable for agriculture. He encouraged Tabora residents to be proactive in tapping these opportunities and encouraged LGAs to extract bankable projects from the guide and market them to investors.

Hon. Mwambe, noted the intention of the sixth phase Government under the leadership of the President of the United Republic of Tanzania Her Excellency, Samia Suluhu Hassan, has placed great emphasis on improving the investment climate and doing business to attract investment that will boost our economy. He directed Regional and LGAs Officials to read and understand the guide, and work professionally to achieve its intended objectives. Doing so will simplify the task of attracting investment in the Region. His expectation is that every government network will get rid of bureaucracy, and unproductive barriers that hinder investors when they arrive in the Region to invest.

Hon. Mwambe reminded that the Government has issued instructions aimed at improving the Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries Sectors to produce sufficient raw materials that will be used in industries. The industries should use raw materials available in the relevant areas. For example, Tabora will produce raw materials including sunflower, peanuts, rice, cotton, tobacco, cashew nuts and chicory. Build industries that will create more jobs for agriculture, livestock, beekeeping and other natural resources. Also to build industries that will produce products that will be used by many people, for example cooking oil, rice, sugar and textiles.

Minister of State, Prime Minister’s Office- Investment, Hon. Geofrey Idelfence Mwambe providing a speech during the  launch of Tabora Region Investment Guide on 8th May 2021.

Hon. Mwambe noted that Tabora Region has many investment attractions including land suitable for the cultivation of various strategic crops including cashew, sunflower, mango, rice, cotton and horticulture. The region also has many indigenous livestock that need to be improved to enable investors to achieve greater productivity and profitability. Another great opportunity is beekeeping due to the existence of many forests that will facilitate such investment.

The Government’s directive is to ensure that the Region co-operates with the Tanzania Investment Center – Zonal Office in Kigoma to establish a One Stop Center which should be adequately equipped with all the necessary equipment and experts who will work to provide services to the investors. All key people who are required to provide services include Land, Business, Tanzania Bureau of Standards (TBS), Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA), Tanzania Medicines & Medical Devices Authority (TMDA), Small Industries Development Organization (SIDO), Weights and Measures Agency (WMA), NEMC, Meat Board, and others. Hon. Mwambe added that we all see how long is the list of public institutions responsible for issuing so many permits and licenses, even just mentioning them is exhausting. So we need to work as a single desk to eliminate bureaucracy and costs for both investors and traders.

Hon. Mwambe also urged all departments at the regional and district levels to work together, eliminate bureaucracy and facilitate investment in their areas, to increase employment and revenue. The key issues highlighted by Hon. Mwambe included identifying areas or opportunities suitable for local investors, identifying land banks for investment especially industrial parks, promoting investing in Special Economic Zones (SEZ), coming up with a comprehensive investment policy, Government to continue with reforms for improving business environment, LGAs to buy or rent GPS machines to solve the issue of land surveying, and to revamp industries currently not operating in Tabora.

Hon. Geofrey Idelfence Mwambe celebrating after launching the Tabora Region Investment Guide on 8th May 2021

For her part, the Minister of State, Prime Minister’s Office (Policy, Parliamentary Affairs, Labour, Youth, Employment and Persons with Disability) Hon. Jenista Mhagama said it is the right time for Tabora to start running in terms of development. The investment guide is a special tool for solving unemployment problems, especially for youth. She noted the Prime Minister’s Office is facilitating mindset change in agriculture by supporting block farming. She appreciated Tabora Region for allocating land to serve that purpose. 

The block farming program is expected to speed up investment in Tanzania and it is sought to be a strategy for implementing One Village One Product (OVOP). Hon. Mhagama emphasized that it is now time for agricultural revolution and “Block Farming” is the model (Kizimba Model) to achieve that. “The Block Farming aims at enabling the people, especially the youth, to do commercial agriculture and increase productivity jointly. Young people will be able to access fertilizer easily, get inputs, and access reliable markets for their products.” said Minister Mhagama. She also noted that the ministry has many schemes including the Viwanda Scheme where farmers along the value chain can get a loan of TZS 8 to 500 million. When concluding, She emphasized that the implementation of the guide is crucial and officials should reorient toward facilitating investors.

Hon. Jenista Mhagama, Minister of State, Prime Minister’s Office (Policy, Parliamentary Affairs, Labour, Youth, Employment and Persons with Disability) providing her remarks during the launch of Tabora Region Investment Guide on 8th May 2021

Hon. Hussein Bashe, Minister for Agriculture thanked UNDP for the commitment to support Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV). He further explained that Sunflower and Sesame are the priority crops in block farming. He noted that Nzega District has 43,000 hectares, and Uyui District has 13,000 hectares set aside for block farming. He further highlighted the current priority areas that the Ministry of Agriculture mentioned: research, seed, mechanization, and extension services. Hon. Bashe also noted the implementation of the guide is needed. He also directed the middle men who are buying cotton and sesame to pay farmers the allowed minimum price or above. “In 2021, the minimum price for 1 Kg of Cotton is TZS 1,050 and that of sesame is TZS 2,000”, Hon. Bashe said.  

Deputy Minister of Agriculture Hon. Hussein Bashe providing his remarks during the inauguration the Tabora Region Investment Guide on 8th May 2021

Hon. Mashimba Ndaki, Minister of Livestock and Fisheries said that having the guide is one thing but its implementation is key. It is very important to improve productivity and produce quality raw materials for serving industries. “We should improve productivity and follow the best practices”, Hon. Ndaki emphasized.

The Minister of Livestock and Fisheries, Hon. Mashimba Ndaki providing his remarks during the launch of Tabora Region Investment Guide on 8th May 2021

The event attracted a good number of actors who are involved in industry sector, agriculture sector, trade and general public from Tabora region and other regions to attend. For his part, Tabora Regional Commissioner, Hon. Dr. Philemon Sengati first thanked Dr. Mwambe for accepting to be the official guest of honor for the event.  He appreciated the important step marked by launching the guide, and explained how the region will ensure its practical implementation. He acknowledged that the launch of the guide is a historic and honorable event for the region. Hon. Dr. Sengati, among other things, congratulated the Economic and Social Foundation (ESRF) for expertise provided during the preparation of the Tabora Region Investment Guide.

Hon. Dr. Sengati explained that the guide will help to promote investment opportunities and attractions including land, large numbers of livestock approximately 3.7 million, historical tourism, the presence of minerals and forest reserves as well as protected forests suitable for beekeeping and harvesting of forest related products. In his remarks, he noted various investment opportunities and attractions available in all eight Local Government Authorities of Tabora Region to attract local and foreign investors. 

Hon. Dr. Sengati mentioned political will, noting that Tabora Regional Government is committed to working with investors in eliminating the challenges they face. The region has electricity connected to the national grid; water from Lake Victoria; paved roads connecting Tabora Region with six (6) other regions and neighboring countries; large land suitable for growing a variety of crops including sunflower, rice, mangoes, cashew nuts, cotton nuts, etc.; large number of livestock; the region is connected to the western tourist belt where there are two national parks of the Ugalla River and Kigosi Muyovosi and the ISAWIMA wildlife corridor; the region also has protected forests; forest reserves and forests suitable for commercial beekeeping, and hardwoods; availability of raw materials including rice, leather, milk, cotton, tobacco, nuts & sunflower; presence of archeology (Dr. Livingistone’s Tablet); availability of Mineral resources (gold in lgunga, Nzega Kaliva & Sikonge districts).

Tabora Regional Commissioner, Hon. Dr. Sengati briefly explained the Region’s aspirations after launching the investment guide, mentioning the increase of revenue for Local Government Authorities; generating jobs that will result from investments in tourism, industry, agriculture, livestock, beekeeping and mining; increasing production of agricultural, livestock and natural resources including beekeeping products; increasing production of local and national products in general, including sunflower oil, peanuts and chicory; stimulate the establishment of industries that add value to the raw materials available in the region; attracting investors from domestic and outside the country; promoting large collective farms for cashew and sunflower (Block farming) in all councils; establishment of farms to produce quality seed crops for livestock; developing investment areas (serviced land); and reducing land acquisition costs for investment (cost reduction or free release). 

Hon. Dr. Sengati further noted that the Regional orientation after launching the guide is for each council to prepare and finalize its Investment Guide; each council to develop a strategic plan that will enable the investment opportunities identified to be a reality; survey land earmarked for investment; the LGAs to invest in strategic projects; establish Block Farming for cashew, sunflower and peanut farms in all councils; establish farms to produce quality agricultural seeds in all councils; establish livestock farms, fodder, and production of quality livestock (livestock stocks); incorporate the opportunities identified in the Tabora into the Regional website; and eliminate bureaucracy to speed up investment.

Hon. Dr. Sengati briefly described various efforts already made by the Region to attract investment mentioning the region has set aside a total of 1.36 million hectares of land for various investments; the Region organized a Business and Investment Opportunities Forum on 21-23 November 2018; and also the region has initiated various strategic projects for each council including: construction of a bee products processing plant in Sikonge District Council, construction of a modern bus station in Nzega Town Council and Tabora Municipality, establishment of Agricultural Seed Production Farms in Nzega Town Council, and the region has established a cashew joint farming (Block farming) in Uyui District.

Tabora Regional Commissioner, Hon. Hon. Dr. Philemon Sengati (at the Middle) accompanying the guest of honour to visit various booths during the  launch of Tabora Region Investment Guide on 8th May 2021.

Speaking at the event, UNDP Resident Representative, Ms. Christine Musisi said UNDP will continue to support the Government’s efforts in improving the lives of citizens. He said UNDP would continue to assist the Regions in implementing these guidelines by providing technical advice and financial resources where needed. “UNDP in collaboration with the Government, and the Economic and Social Research Foundation (ESRF) has successfully developed investment guides in 25 regions” said Musisi.

UNDP Resident Representative, Ms. Christine Musisi providing her remarks during the launch of Tabora Region Investment Guide on 8th May 2021

Dr. Hoseana Bohela Lunogelo – Research Associate at ESRF who represented the Executive Director – Dr. Tausi Kida, acknowledged the mutual cooperation given by various stakeholders from regional, district to ward level when preparing the guide, saying the Guide has represented the views of people of Tabora Region. The exercise to identify investment opportunities was conducted in all LGAs of Tabora Region i.e. Uyui District Council, Igunga, Nzega, Sikonge, Urambo, Kaliua, Nzega Town Council, and Tabora Municipal Council. 

Special thanks were given to the Tabora Regional Commissioner, Hon. Dr. Philemon Sengati; Regional Administrative Secretary, Mr. Invite Robart Makungu; Retired Regional Commissioner, Hon. Aggrey D.J. Mwanri; and other experts at Tabora Regional Secretariat for the great support they provided to ESRF during the preparation of the Guide. Appreciation was also given the ESRF team that participated in preparing the Guide: Dr. Hoseana Bohela Lunogelo, Prof. Good Godwin, Mr. Mussa Mayala Martine, Mrs. Margareth Nzuki, Mr. Benedicto N. Mutalemwa, and Ms. Jocelyne Mushi. 

Dr. lunogelo explained the contents of the guide highlighted the investment opportunities in Tabora Region including the development of industrial parks individually or in partnership with LGAs under the PPP arrangement; processing of oil seeds to add value to sunflower, groundnuts and sesame produced in the region; and processing of leather products, which is linked to meat processing industries. The region is geared to produce more tobacco and cotton, and so there are opportunities for tobacco processing, cotton ginning and textile manufacturing. The region’s policy is to encourage mineral beneficiation and so there is opportunity to invest in gold smelting and mineral trading. There are also opportunities in processing and packaging of honey and its by-products, as well as cereals processing, and fruits/vegetable grading and processing.

In order to supply raw materials needed, investors are also welcome to establish commercial beef and dairy ranches, poultry farms, sunflower farming, commercial beekeeping, horticultural crops, timber and fuelwood plantations, and aquaculture. In social services, there are opportunities in building and operating tourist infrastructure as well as providing tourist services (hotels, restaurants, tour guide, campsites etc.); vocational training schools; warehouses and cold chain services; day care and nursery schools; private primary and secondary schools; real estate development; and private health care facilities (dispensaries, health centres and hospitals). Other equally attractive opportunities are construction of modern sports centres and stadia; as well as establishing commuter buses services to serve the ever-increasing number of passengers.

Dr. Hoseana Bohela Lunogelo providing a Statement from ESRF on behalf of the Executive Director – Dr. Tausi Kida during the  launch of Tabora Region Investment Guide on 8th May 2021.

Dr. Lunogelo lastly called upon all stakeholders to join hands in implementing the guide since it has a lot to offer in agriculture, industry and many other opportunities for the development of the region and the nation at large. ESRF assured the Tabora Region of continued support in the implementation of the guide by assisting the LGAs to prepare feasibility studies and business plans in some of the opportunities they may want to invest.

The Guide provides investment information to prospective local and foreign firms, individuals, and attracts potential investors in the regions in order to stimulate both business and enterprise development and growth. In addition, the investment guide is intended to enhance regions’ competitiveness in areas where it has strengths as well as in emerging economic areas. The guide is meant to assist potential investors in making specific and general investment decisions. Investment Guides already launched may be accessed at https://esrf.or.tz/index.php/regional-investment-guides/ while Tabora Region Investment Guide may be downloaded at https://esrf.or.tz/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/Tabora-Investment-Guide-Eng.pdf

Participants during the launch of Tabora Region Investment Guide on 8th May 2021.