Tanzania is a land rich in minerals. Mining makes up more than 50% of the country’s total exports, of which a large part come from gold. The country has gold reserves of 45 million ounces, generating revenue of over a billion USD. Diamonds are also found in significant amounts. Since it was opened in 1940, the Williamson diamond mine has produced
19 million carats (3,800 kgs) of diamonds. Gemstones, nickel, copper, uranium, kaolin, titanium, cobalt and platinum are also mined in Tanzania.
Mining was strictly controlled and operated by the government during the 1970s and 1980s. Mining claims were then opened up to individuals, which sparked the small scale mining industry of Tanzania. In the 1990s, the laws were further relaxed to encourage the introduction of companies which opened up large scale mining operation. Notable legislation for the mining industry includes the 1997 Mineral Policy, the 1998 Mineral Act and the 2010 Mineral Act. The latest piece of legislation granted the mining company a higher percentage of royalties on gold and base metals, rough diamonds, coloured gemstones, uranium and other minerals; made it mandatory for mining companies to be listed on the stock exchange and gave the government a stake in all new mining projects. Tanzania has accepted the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme.
Tanzania’s president, John Magufuli, imposed new laws on the mining industry in 2017, including higher taxes on mineral exports and allowing the government to have a higher stake in some mining operations. These laws have been slowing investment in the sector.
Agriculture is a critical economic sector, representing 29.1% of Tanzania’s GDP and almost three quarters of the productive workforce. Moreover, it is the main source of food, industrial raw materials and foreign exchange earnings. Since Tanzania is endowed with a diversity of climatic and geographical zones, farmers grow a wide variety of annual and permanent crops. This includes food and cash crops as well as fruits, vegetables and some farmers raise livestock including cattle, goats, sheep, pigs and chickens as well as small numbers of turkeys, ducks, rabbits, donkeys and horses.
Investment in agro-processing industries entails adding value, and improvement of standards of quality. The following are key areas:
- Fruit / Vegetable processing
Tanzania produces 2.75 million tons of fruits and vegetable per year but only 4 percent is processed.There is a significant potential for the provision of heavy equipment for commercial farming and processing of fruits and vegetables for the locals as well as export markets.
- Cashew nut processing
This is a major cash crop and 120,000 tons are produced annually.There is an opportunity in rehabilitating old plants or establishing medium-scale processing plants.
- Oil seeds
Tanzania still imports a lot of edible oil.Processing of oil seeds locally is now on the rise, therefore there is potential in supplying oil pressing and processing equipment.
- Meat and Dairy sector
Given the large livestock population, the country is ideal for meat processing, packaging and processing of diary products.
- Chemicals sector
Opportunities exist in the chemical sector also as there is a local demand for fertilizers and pesticides.
Click here to download report from Bureau Veritas on doing business with Tanzania.