THIRTEEN new investors have been issued licences by the Export Processing Zone Authority (EPZA). This comes after five months since the authority issued similar licences to six investors.
EPZA officials said that the move is crucial in contributing to Tanzania's industrial sector development, creating new employment and strengthening the country's economy at large.
The EPZA Director General, Dr Adelhelm Meru, issued the Export Processing Zone (EPZ) licences to the 13 companies that will operate in EPZA areas, in a brief ceremony in Dar es Salaam over the weekend. "We still need investors, we will work hard towards that objective," he said.
The new companies will invest a total capital of USD 62.2 million and create about 3,500 employments. They are expected to have exports valued at USD 61.86 million.
Of the 13 companies, six companies are wholly owned by Tanzanians, while two companies are joint ventures between Tanzania and other foreign countries.
The six companies are Rungwe Avocado Co. Limited, Basaliyu Textiles Limited, Polytex Africa Limited, Great African Food Company Limited, METL Motors Limited and METL Processing Limited.
Other companies with origin of ownership in brackets are Amama Farms Limited (Sweden/Tanzania); Alkafil Company limited (Oman); Fides Tanzania Limited (Netherlands) and Tansan Investment Limited (Turkey/Tanzania).
Others are Wuzhou Investment Limited (China); Diamond Peal Company Limited (Pakistan) and Super Power Soap Industries (India).
"It is good that six companies are owned by Tanzanians," Dr Meru said, adding that the increase of Tanzanians in investment activities will help spur economy.
"We should continue encouraging Tanzanians to engage fully in investment matters, as this will help spearhead social economic development," he said.
He noted that among the companies that received certificates, seven of them deal with processing agriculture products, a thing he said was very positive for the country.
Dr Meru emphasised that all countries that have achieved significant development have a strong base of industries and that Tanzania should follow suit.
"We cannot achieve significant development if we do not have industries; this is what we are trying to do," he said. According to the EPZA Director General, industries create jobs, bring income, technology and value addition to country's raw materials.
He noted that Tanzania mainly export raw materials and in the process lose technology, by products, among others. "You become a market of your own products," he said, adding that the companies will help solve the problem.
On his part, the Director of Rungwe Avocado Company Limited, Mr Joseph Mungai said the certificate signify a new chapter for his company.
"We are very grateful for this certificate," Mr Mungai who was a minister of education during the third phase government, said.
Mr Wilhard Mlay, the Financial Manager of Fides Tanzania Limited said they are expecting better future after getting the certificate. "This is a crucial progress - we are optimistic," he said.