The government is planning to expand the arrivals hall at the Terminal II of the Julius Nyerere International Airport (JNIA) in a bid to increase its passenger holding capacity in one go.
This was revealed yesterday by deputy minister of Works, Transport and Communications, Mr Edwin Ngonyani, in a joint press conference with his counterparts from ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism, Mr Ramo Makani, and Mr Hamad Masauni from ministry of Home Affairs.
The three deputies visited the JNIA to inspect operations and analyse challenges that need immediate intervention by the government.
"The major challenges that we've noticed, among others, are the small size of the arrivals' hall and shortage of man power at JNIA's Immigration department. These, in turn, cause delays in passenger clearance. I assure you that the government will address this with immediate effect," he said.
Mr Ngonyani added that in a bid to reduce queues by international arrivals who apply for visas on entry, he would consult with the ministry of Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation so that the service will be provided at Tanzania's embassies abroad. For his part, Mr Makani reiterated the government resolve to promote tourism, a move, he said, would push growth of the country's gross domestic product (GDP).
"We shall focus on promoting Tanzania as unique tourist destination, put in place an enabling environment and upgrading the supporting infrastructure," he said.
About shortage of staff at the Immigration department, the ministry of Home Affairs pledged to deal with the challenge by adding more officers and modern equipment to easy the clearance process.
The three deputy ministers said they would extend their visit to all entry points across country and ensure all challenges were addressed as part of efforts to attract more visitors to the country.