EU pumps Sh63.5 billion into Tanzania's business engine

Permanent Secretary at the President's Office-Planning and Investment, Dr Tausi Kida (left) and EU's head of Cooperation, Mr Cedric Merel speak to the journalists about the project on January 22, 2024 in Dar es Salaam. PHOTO | COURTESY

Dar es Salaam. The European Union (EU) has injected a massive €23 million (nearly Sh63.5 billion) into three critical projects aimed at revving up Tanzania's business environment.

This timely investment focuses on regulatory reform, quality control, and empowering micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs).

The Permanent Secretary at the President's Office-Planning and Investment, Dr Tausi Kida, hailed the success of the blueprint implementation.

Since 2017, a staggering 374 fees and levies have been eliminated, making it easier and cheaper for businesses to operate. Additionally, 55 laws and regulations across key sectors like agriculture, tourism, and energy have been amended to foster a more conducive business climate.

The Qualitan project, implemented by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), is strengthening the Tanzania Bureau of Standards (TBS) and equipping MSMEs to meet international quality standards.

The initiative includes establishing and equipping nine laboratories in Dar es Salaam and five in Dodoma, enabling TBS to provide efficient quality assurance services.

The UNDP-backed Funguo program is nurturing Tanzania's next generation of entrepreneurs. By 2023, it has reached approximately 1,800 innovative youth-led companies, disbursing Sh4 billion to 43 promising ventures. This support has directly and indirectly created 4,000 jobs for young Tanzanians, showcasing the program's potential to unleash the power of youth-led businesses.

The EU remains committed to supporting Tanzania's business growth trajectory. Mr. Cedric Merel, EU's head of Cooperation, emphasized the need for continued collaboration to ensure seed-funded enterprises can flourish and become independent, sustainable businesses.

UNDP's resident representative, Mr. Shigeki Komatsubara, and UNIDO's Africa regional division Chief, Mr. Victor Djemba, echoed this sentiment, pledging their partnership with the government and the EU in driving Tanzania's economic development, particularly through empowering young entrepreneurs and MSMEs