26 November 2012

Tanzania: Dar es Salaam to Host Agribusiness Investment Conference

Photo: The Daily News
Women vendors selling their agricultural produce at a Tanzanian market (file photo).

TANZANIA will this week host a first ever Agribusiness Investment Showcase event scheduled for Dar es Salaam.

The conference will be held on Wednesday and Thursday under the theme 'Accelerating Tanzania's Agribusiness Investment.'

It is organized by the Tanzania Investment Centre (TIC) in collaboration with the Prime Minister's Office and the Southern Agriculture Corridor of Tanzania (SAGCOT) Centre.

Announcing the conference over the weekend in Dar es Salaam, the Acting Executive Director of TIC, Mr Raymond Mbilinyi, said the event is meant to harness the potential for investment in agriculture, trade and socio-economic development in the SAGCOT region with a view to introducing prospective investors through tailor-made targeted investment promotion and physical visits.

Mr Mbilinyi told journalists that SAGCOT Investor Showcase is expected to attract 70 foreign prospective investors and over 40 local companies ready to seize all existing investment opportunities falling under the corridor. "The government is actively promoting SAGCOT," he told journalists.

He said President Jakaya Kikwete and Premier Mizengo Pinda have shown dedication in promoting agriculture in the country and that it is now time to put things to action for the benefit of local and foreign investors and the country at large. He said that the conference will be an opportunity for local agribusiness investors to network with their counterparts from abroad.

It is expected that participants from outside the country will come from Asia, Europe and Far East. "This event will give a splendid opportunity for both local and foreign investors to learn and understand why it is noble to invest in SAGCOT," he explained, adding that a variety of ministers will present papers on various ways for which to attain development through modern agriculture from different perspectives.

There will also be presentations on specific investment projects in rice, sugar and livestock sectors, including dedicated breakaway discussion, question and answer sessions. There will be also an opportunity to visit earmarked investment sites on the second day and see work underway to improve supporting infrastructure.

The Deputy Chief Executive Officer, SAGCOT Centre, Ms Jennifer Baarn, said the conference is an opportunity to showcase what the country has to offer, but more specifically, what its investment priorities are. "SAGCOT is Kilimo Kwanza in action, targeting Tanzania's south-central 'granary' region," she said, referring to the country's initiative (Agriculture First) that seeks to transform the agriculture into a highly productive sector and an engine of economic growth.

SAGCOT is a public-private partnership that hopes to catalyze responsible private sector investment that will bring major benefits to domestic food supply, engage with smallholder farmers and local communities, and strive to do so in an environmental sustainable way.

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