Dodoma — THE Ministry of Trade and Industry has cleared doubts over the quality of Tiger Head dry cell batteries saying that the batteries met minimum standards.
There has been concern over the quality of the batteries that are imported from China. Deputy minister for Trade and Industry, Mr Gregory Teu said that Tanzania Bureau of Standards (TBS) the quality watchdog in the country had certified the product and people should go ahead and use them.
Mr Teu was responding to a supplementary question raised by Abdallah Mtutura (Tunduru South-CCM) who questioned the quality of the batteries. He said that the batteries leak easily and do not last long.
The country needs over 150 million dry cell batteries per year against 100 million available each year, a deficit of over 60 per cent. Mr Teu said there is only one dry battery making factory in the country, Panasonic Battery (T ) Ltd.
He was responding to the basic question asked by Mr Muhammad Ibrahim Sanya (Mji Mkongwe-CUF) who wanted to know why government was not looking for an investor for making batteries.
Mr Sanya said that people especially rural dwellers depend on dry cell batteries for radios so as to access information. The deputy minister said that the government has inked a contract with a Chinese company, Tiger Head Company Limited to distribute batteries in the country.
Mr Teu said that Trade and Industry Ministry in collaboration with Tanzania Investment Centre (TIC) are seriously looking for both local and foreign companies to invest in battery making.
"My Ministry and TIC are diligently looking for a prospect investors from both within and outside the country who would invest in this area as you can see there is huge shortage of batteries in Tanzania," Mr Teu noted.