Tanzania Daily News (Dar es Salaam)

Tanzania: India to Establish a Tractor Assembly Plant in Tanzania

A JOINT Commission between Tanzania and India has been concluded with the signing of a number of agreements, one of which India will establish a tractor assembly plant and a farm machinery manufacturing unit in the country.

Reading a summary of the agreed matters on Tuesday, the Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Mr Bernard Membe, said India will also invest in the manufacturing and processing of medicines and pharmaceuticals.

"Tanzania has also called for early implementation and construction of Apollo Hospitals in the country and a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the Institute and the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) has been concluded," he said.

On agriculture, Minister Membe said India's support for a tractor assembly and farm machinery manufacturing unit was important as the country implemented the Kilimo Kwanza initiative, adding that 2 million US dollars (about 3.5bn/-) had been set aside for the venture.

Tanzania, he said, has again invited Indian investors, particularly small and medium enterprises in agro and food processing, such as cashew nuts and cotton, and other raw materials for Tanzania to add value to them thereby creating employment.

On trade and industries, he said the two sides had agreed that Small Industries Development Organization (SIDO) will be assisted to set up business intervention centres for demonstration and training of technologies for start-up entrepreneurs in the country.

"2m US dollars has been set aside by our Indian counterparts for that purpose," he noted. Another area of cooperation is for India to support Tanzania on improving rice production and the dairy industry.

On Information and Communication Technology (ICT), Mr Membe said the government had received 10 million US dollars (about 20bn/-) which was offered by the Indian Prime Minister, Mr Manmohan Sigh, in 2011 for the sector's development.

Part of the funds, he said, will be used by the Arusha-based Resource Centre of the Nelson Mandela African Institute of Science and Technology.

On United Nations reforms, both sides expressed the desire to support the UN's expansion plan of the Security Council where Tanzania will support India's endeavour to acquire a seat on the council.

In order for the agreements to be implemented as smoothly as expected, the issue of value addition and the production quality goods for export to India had been emphasised, under which the government planned to empower Tanzania Bureau of Standards (TBS) to ensure quality.

"We have resolved to make sure TBS is empowered to the maximum so that it is able to ensure issues of quality are not compromised as we look forward to exploring new markets and export massively to India," he said.

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