20 January 2013

Tanzania: Lack of Capital Cripples Businesses in Zanzibar

Zanzibar — BUREAUCRACY, lack of capital for investment, and insecurity are among challenges facing business operations in the islands, members of the business community in Zanzibar said on Saturday, during the 'Zanzibar Business Council (ZBC)' meeting.

ZBC is chaired by President Ali Mohamed Shein and is supposed to have at least two meetings with its stakeholders annually, but due to undisclosed reasons, the council did not hold any meeting last year.

Businesspersons from the tourism sector complained about filthiness of the Zanzibar town, bureaucracy in processing documents for investments, and insecurity. There have been incidents of armed robbery, attacks on tourists and theft in hotels.

"We need to strengthen Public Private Partnership (PPP) to overcome most challenges, which through determination can be solved," members of the Zanzibar Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture (ZCCIA) proposed.

The minister for Trade, Industries and Marketing, Mr Nassor Ahmed Mazrui, said at the meeting, which was also attended by other ministers, principal secretaries (PS), prominent business persons in Zanzibar, and a delegation from Tanzania National Business Council (TNBC) that regular meetings help to find solutions to problems.

In his remarks to open ZBC's seventh meeting, Shein asked members of the business community to work hard, avoid tax evasion, and give priority in establishing industries in the islands.

He said Zanzibar industry sector is still undeveloped. Reviewing the last ZBC meeting held in 2011, the ZBC Secretary, Mr Ali Vuai, said the respective government institutions have been working on improving infrastructure, minimizing bureaucracy, reach members of the Diaspora in various countries abroad, cleanliness in the stone town by improving garbage collection and constructing seventeen new toilets.

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