Arusha — PLANS are afoot for the establishment of a cashewnut processing plant factory which will serve Mtwara and Lindi regions.
The National Social Security Fund (NSSF) Director General, Dr Ramadhani Dau, revealed here, that the project will cost between 35 million and 40 million US dollars upon completion. According to him, the costs can be afforded and the ultimate value of the turnaround from the investment will be spellbinding.
"The problem with Tanzania's natural resources and the country's other agricultural products is that they are being exported raw, something which adds very little value to them while also create employment to other countries," stated Dr Dau.
He was presenting a paper during the ongoing Third NSSF Members' Forum taking place at the Arusha International Conference Centre.
"At the moment, the value of cashew nuts when exported raw, is one US dollar or just 1,600/- per kilo, but once processed the same kilo will fetch seven-times the value at more than 7 US dollars or 11,200/-, enough to transform local growers' lives for the better," said Mr Dau.
He also used the occasion to point out that when social security schemes invest in public projects, under joint venture with the government, guarantees better outcome in terms of profits than other forms of private enterprising.
Dr Dau added that, when NSSF directs its investment portfolio into national infrastructures such as the proposed Kigamboni Bridge in Dar es Salaam, the University of Dodoma and Nelson Mandela African Institute of Science and Technology in Arusha the profits realized are usually tenfold.
"Because working with the government means our members' contributions are fully guaranteed but even better is the fact that these are the type of investments that help to solve problems in the country," maintained Dr Dau.