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Tanzania: Private Sector Feat Pleases Premier As He Tours Dar es Salaam International Trade FairFriday, July 04, 2014 > 09:11:53
THE government reaffirmed its commitment to support the private sector, which it has embraced as the engine of economic growth for the country's prosperity.
Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda made the remarks after almost two hours of sightseeing at various pavilions in the ongoing 38th Dar es Salaam International Trade Fair (DITF) in the city.
Mr Pinda said under the Public Private Partnership (PPP), the government can achieve some development goals more easily as the sector plays a greater role in empowering low-income earners.
He noted that there were a number of private sectors who have been trying hard to invest in the country and embark on various initiatives to empower locals, adding that the government has also to play a greater role in ensuring that it creates a favourable environment for their operations.
"Just see this... the National Microfinance Bank (NMB) has allocated about 50bn/- to support various development initiatives embarked on by the people and offering motorcycles to youth on loan basis. We must also extend our support to this sector," he observed.
Mr Pinda noted that the existence of the private sector has also helped in eradicating unnecessary bureaucracy in service delivery. For instance, he said, the establishment of Global Link Education; one of the private sector entities taking part in the exhibition, has done a lot in facilitating Tanzanian students studying abroad.
"These young people who connect Tanzanian students with overseas colleges are doing a good job. We must allow such institutions to operate in the country and the government has to support them fully," he pointed out.
Meanwhile, the prime minister has tasked the Ministry of Trade and Industry to see the possibility of expanding Mwalimu Julius Nyerere Fair Grounds, commonly known as Sabasaba Trade Fair Grounds, to make the place attractive to many exhibitors.
He noted that many structures at the trade fair grounds have been there for many years back and hence it was high time they were demolished to pave way for the construction of new and modern ones. "Funds for the activity could even be raised locally.
The ministry can just hold talks with... let say, NSSF or TIB Development Bank and see the possibility of financing this construction," he suggested. He added that the organisers could even put off the show for one year so that at the end of the day we would come up with newly established buildings and improved infrastructure to attract more exhibitors.
Mr Pinda hailed the authority for making the DITF a better and more attractive show that has pulled many international companies to it. He noted that the fact that the number of foreign companies has gone up from about 400 last year to over 500 this year, indicated that the fair was now internationally recognised.
"There are many foreign companies participating, many of them from big countries like US and Japan. This is a great achievement," he stated. This year's exhibition has brought together about 1,700 and 500 local and foreign companies respectively and Tanzania Trade Development Authority (TanTrade) is set to collect more revenues from the exhibition.
Meanwhile, Zanzibar Second Vice-President, Ambassador Seif Ali Idi, officially launched the 38th DITF yesterday, imploring local firms to use the exhibitions as a milestone to expand their market regionally and globally.
"Use the opportunity of signing new deals and orders to improve productivity and quality of goods so that they may compete in the foreign markets," Ambassador Seif said, commending Tantrade for improving the trade fair that has attracted many local and international firms.
The number of local companies participating in this year's trade fair has increased to 1,690 from 1,601 last year, with foreign firms reaching 490 from 460, an evidence that Tantrade is doing a commendable job, according to Ambassador Seif.
The second VP presented several prizes to best exhibitors from various categories. The overall winner was Ardhi University, followed by AFri tea and Coffee blenders Limited and the National Social Security Fund (NSSF).