A woman picks tea leaves at a plantation in Nandi Hills, in Kenya’s highlands region west of capital Nairobi, November 5, 2014. PHOTO: REUTERS

Tourism companies of Pakistan invited to start operations in Tanzania

As one of the biggest tea importers around the world, Pakistan can save millions of dollars if it starts importing the commodity from Tanzania, instead of routing it through Kenya, remarked Tanzanian Chamber of Commerce President Paul Koyi.

During meetings with businessmen associated with the Korangi Association of Trade and Industry (KATI) and Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) on Thursday, Koyi pointed out that in volumetric terms, tea was one of the main import goods of Pakistan.

“Though there is a general belief that tea comes mainly from Kenya, one-third of tea is produced in Tanzania,” he said. “There are massive opportunities for investment in Tanzania, especially in agro-production and processing, pharmaceuticals, industrial production and manufacturing.”

He announced that Pakistani investors would be more than welcome in Tanzania as the African nation needed investment in the industrial sector. According to him, Pakistani people have huge talent in this area.

Koyi underlined that Tanzania was a peaceful country and its economy depended on agriculture, mining and tourism. Mining contributes around 70% to Tanzania’s gross domestic product (GDP). Giving more details, he said Tanzania was a large producer of agricultural products such as avocado and dry fruits.

He highlighted that the country lacked processing units for agricultural produce, which was why Kenya was able to export tea and other products to countries around the world. “If we attract investment to the agro-processing industry, we will be able to export these products directly,” he remarked.

Talking about Tanzania’s mountains, beaches and national parks, Koyi invited tourism companies of Pakistan to start operations in Tanzania.

KATI President Saleemuz Zaman said though both countries enjoyed historic relations and had cultural similarities, they failed to reflect in economic indicators. “Both countries have huge potential to enhance the bilateral trade volume as well as economic relations,” he said.

Speaking to the envoy, FPCCI Vice President Sheikh Sultan Rehman cherished that the volume of trade in goods and services between Pakistan and Tanzania rose from $107.4 million in fiscal year 2018-19 to $154.8 million in 2019-20. Of the total, Pakistan’s exports of goods and services in FY20 amounted to $69.8 million while imports from Tanzania came in at $85 million.

He added that Pakistani companies could invest in the agriculture sector in Tanzania for skills development, job creation, technology upgrade, supply of quality inputs, biotechnology and improvement of supply chain management. “Since the development of manufacturing sector is important for growth of Tanzania, Pakistan should support creative productive capacity, training programmes and technical cooperation,” he said.

Keeping in view the transformation of Tanzania as a marvelous tourism destination, Pakistani companies could focus on various types of tourism such as adventure tourism, coastal and safari tourism, medical tourism, wildlife tourism and cultural tourism, he stressed. Rehman recommended that both countries should focus on establishing a joint business council, which would lead to the formation of a joint chamber of commerce for promoting trade fairs and exhibitions, business-to-business meetings and exchange of trade delegations.

“Trade sections of embassies of both countries should pay more attention to bilateral business development,” he said. On the occasion, a memorandum of understanding was signed between the FPCCI and the Tanzanian Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture for collaboration in order to expand trade between the two countries.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 27th, 2020.

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