Tanzania Daily News (Dar es Salaam)

16 August 2014

Tanzania: Engineers to Support SMEs With Technology

Arusha — TANZANIA will channel multifaceted mechanical and industrial engineering energies to serve Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the country.

"As economies are becoming increasingly globalised, we are witnessing a marginalisation of production," stated the Minister of Industries and Trade, Dr Abdallah Kigoda.

The Minister's speech was read here in Arusha on Thursday by Meru District Commissioner, Mr Nyerembe Munasa Sabi during the opening of the Third International Conference on Mechanical and Industrial Engineering organised by the University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM).

Dr Kigoda's statement revealed that Tanzania was currently evolving as catalyst and hub for economic growth in agriculture, mining, transport, energy and construction with emphasis on developing and supporting SMEs that employ the majority of the country's citizens.

The forum brought together researchers and practitioners to share ideas in relation to mechanical and industrial engineering to explore ways of strengthening innovation and development agendas across the East African Region.

"It is my opinion that the entire African industrialisation process has to be closely tied to SMEs not because global industrialisation has always been linked to the development of SMEs but because these firms have greater potential to contribute to the Gross Domestic Products (GDP)."

Deputy Vice Chancellor for the University of Dar es Salaam, Prof Yunus Mgaya pointed out that for many years research projects in the country were stifled by inadequate funding and the lack of human resources and a lot of researches delayed or failed to take off.

Prof Idd Mkilaha of the Tanzania Atomic Energy Commission said many local research projects undertaken in the country end up on shelves because the system is not effective enough to ensure that the findings reach consumers in a timely manner.

"It is the responsibility of other stakeholders who are not scientists to ensure that these reports are put in a user friendly language and distributed to interested parties," said Prof Mkilaha.

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