Tanzania set to secure $420 million from UAE for key development projects

Finance minister Mwigulu Nchemba and Fund’s director general Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi. PHOTO | COURTESY

Summary

  • The projects include the Benaco-Kyaka power project in Kagera Region and the construction of low-cost housing for public servants in Zanzibar, the Ministry of Finance said in a statement.

Dar es Salaam. The Abu Dhabi Fund for Development has pledged to provide Tanzania with a concessional loan worth $420 million (about Sh1 trillion) as part of efforts to support implementation of key development projects.

The projects include the Benaco-Kyaka power project in Kagera Region and the construction of low-cost housing for public servants in Zanzibar, the Ministry of Finance said in a statement.

Fund’s director general Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi confirmed this to Tanzania’s Finance minister Mwigulu Nchemba who is visiting the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Mr Al Suwaidi said other strategic projects that have also been submitted by the government of Tanzania to the Fund include the construction of the Julius Nyerere Hydropower dam and the standard gauge railway (SGR) which will be considered after mobilising funding from the government and private sector.

Mr Al Suwaidi said the Fund is also ready to support the implementation of other agricultural and fishing projects.

For his part, Dr Nchemba said the government appreciated the support of the fund for the provision of Sh201 million and another $1.3 million for the construction of the 51.1-kilometre Uvinza-Ilunde to Malagarasi tarmac road.

“President Samia Suluhu Hassan had directed that this road should be completed on time to bring economic and social benefits to communities along that road,” he said.

Dr Nchemba noted that Tanzania welcomes foreign investors, including those from Abu Dhabi, to invest in various sectors like construction of strategic projects, livestock, fishing, housing, health, agriculture and livestock.

“We appreciate your pledge of funding our big strategic projects, you have also shown willingness to present our proposals to the government and private sector. We are ready to cooperate with them,” he said.

On his part, deputy Secretary General from the ministry of Finance and Planning, Mr Lawrence Mafuru, said this is also a result of the signing agreement on not charging double tax between Tanzania and the UAE.

“The fund is responsible for funding their local private sector investing in various countries including African countries, with the step we took to sign the agreement to eliminate the challenge of double taxation, we have opened another opportunity for investors who will be empowered by this Fund to invest in our country” said Mr Mafuru.

Abu Dhabi Fund for Development has provided funds for the implementation of various projects in Tanzania including the construction of the Wete-Pemba Hospital, the Kidawe to Uvinza road (77 km), the construction of the Kagera sugar factory and the rural Zanzibar water project which has been completed and they are currently financing the construction of the Uvinza-Ilunde road to Malagarasi worth $15 million