As one of the largest tea importers in the world, Pakistan will save millions of dollars if it starts importing the product from Tanzania instead of routing it through Kenya, said Tanzanian Chamber of Commerce President Paul Koyi.
During a meeting with businessmen affiliated with the Korangi Association of Trade and Industry (KATI) and the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) on Thursday, Koyi noted that tea was one of Pakistan’s major import products in terms of value.
“While there is a general belief that tea comes mainly from Kenya, one third of the tea is produced in Tanzania,” he said. “There are huge opportunities for investment in Tanzania, particularly in agro-production and processing, pharmaceuticals, industrial production and manufacturing.”
He declared that Pakistani businessmen would be more than welcome in Tanzania as the African nation wanted to invest in the industrial sector. According to him the people of Pakistan have enormous talent in this field.
Koyi stressed that Tanzania was a prosperous nation and that its economy relied on agriculture, mining and tourism. Mining contributes about 70% of Tanzania’s gross domestic product (GDP). Giving further information, he said that Tanzania was a big producer of agricultural products such as avocado and dried fruit.
He found out that the country lacks processing units for agricultural products, which is why Kenya has been able to export tea and other items to countries around the world. “If we attract investment to the agro-processing industry, we will be able to export these products directly,” he said.
Talking about Tanzania’s mountains, beaches and national parks, Koyi invited Pakistani tourism companies to launch operations in Tanzania.
KATI President Saleemuz Zaman said that while both countries shared ancient relations and had cultural similarities, they were not expressed in economic indicators. “Both countries have enormous potential to enhance bilateral trade volumes as well as economic relations,” he said.
Speaking to the envoy, FPCCI Vice President Sheik Sultan Rehman said that the amount of trade in goods and services between Pakistan and Tanzania grew from $107.4 million in the 2018-19 fiscal year to $154.8 million in the 2019-20 fiscal year. Pakistan’s exports of goods and services amounted to $69.8 million in the FY20, while imports from Tanzania amounted to $85 million.
He added that Pakistani companies could invest in the agriculture sector in Tanzania to build expertise, create jobs, upgrade technology, supply quality inputs, biotechnology and improve supply chain management. “Since the development of the manufacturing sector is important for the growth of Tanzania, Pakistan should support creative productive capacity, training programmes and technical cooperation,” he said.
In view of the transformation of Tanzania as a wonderful tourism destination, Pakistani companies could concentrate on different forms of tourism, such as adventure tourism, coastal and safari tourism, medicinal tourism, wildlife tourism and cultural tourism. Rehman suggested that both countries should concentrate on the development of a Joint Business Council, which would lead to the development of a Joint Chamber of Commerce to facilitate trade fairs and exhibitions, business-to-business meetings and exchanges of trade delegations.
“Trade sections of the embassies of both countries should pay more attention to the development of bilateral business,” he said. On the occasion, a Memorandum of Agreement was signed between the FPCCI and the Tanzanian Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture to work together to broaden cooperation between the two countries.