Dar es Salaam. Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa has reiterated the government’s commitment to building the relevant physical infrastructure to enable the private sector to thrive.
Speaking during a visit to Lake Cement Limited factory at Kimbiji in Kigamboni District on Saturday, Mr Majaliwa said the government would ensure that all roads leading to strategic investment projects are rehabilitated to guarantee that products being manufactured there are able to reach the market throughout the year.
Lake Cement – which trades as Nyati – is part of a group of three companies including Kilimanjaro Biochem Limited and Unoplast (T) Limited. The former – which has its plant in Moshi in Kilimanjaro - manufactures ethanol and liquid carbon dioxide while the latter – which has its plant in Mwanza - makes mattresses.
“The government is on duty….we are determined to ensure that all strategic projects are connected to markets through all-weather roads….so far, almost all regions are connected except for a few areas here and there,” Mr Majaliwa said.
Earlier, an associate vice president at Lake Cement Limited, Mr Afroz Ansari said the company has been increasing its production each year since 2014 but during rainy seasons, it is being forced to halt production when roads become impassable.
“The 36 kilometre road that connects Lake Cement to Kibada via Dar es Salaam Zoo is very rough…Each year, since the inception of the factory in July 2014, the road situation deteriorates during the rainy season, forcing us to completely close the factory and thus losing business in the process….We appeal to the government to work on this,” said Mr Ansari. At group level, the three companies contribute Sh81.3 billion in various taxes to the government each year and employ a total of 1,250 people indirectly.
With the road in a pathetic condition during the rainy season, said Mr Ansari, Nyati Cement has cumulatively lost 150,000 tonnes of sales volume, translating into a revenue loss of Sh30.7 billion.
“This translates into a cumulative loss of Value Added Tax output of Sh4.7 billion. It also means we have to put out expansion plans on hold,” he said. But Mr Majaliwa said the government will work with the Kigamboni Municipal Council to ensure that the road gets unpaved and surfaced with gravel as it (the government) works on plans to build it to tarmac level. He said the government will make use of newly-launched Tanzania Rural-Urban Road Agency (Tarura) to address rural road challenges.
After visiting the Kigamboni-based cement maker, Mr Majaliwa also went to Namera and Nida factories.
The former – which manufactures fiber - is located at Gongo la Mboto in Dar es Salaam while the latter – textile manufacturer – is located at Ubungo in the commercial hub of Dar es Salaam.