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Kamala Harris announces business boost in Tanzania on Africa tour By Reuters

Kamala Harris announces business boost in Tanzania on Africa tour By Reuters


© Reuters. U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris and Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff are escorted by Tanzanian Vice President Philip Mpango before departing from Julius Nyerere Airport in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania March 31, 2023. REUTERS/Emmanuel Herman/ Pool


By Nuzulack Dausen

DAR ES SALAAM (Reuters) – U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris announced plans to boost trade and investment in Tanzania during a visit there on Thursday, as part of an African tour aimed at strengthening ties with a continent where China and Russia increasingly dominate.

Harris began her trip in Ghana on Sunday before flying late Wednesday to Tanzania’s commercial capital, Dar es Salaam, where she met with President Samia Suluhu Hassan on Thursday.

The two women gave brief statements to the media before embarking on a lengthy session of private talks.

“Working together, our common goal is to increase economic investment in Tanzania and strengthen our economic ties,” Harris said, listing a number of initiatives.

They included a new memorandum of understanding between the Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) and the Tanzanian government.

This will facilitate up to $500 million in financing to help U.S. businesses export goods and services to Tanzania in sectors including infrastructure, transportation, digital technology, climate and energy security, and energy production. ‘electricity.

Harris also mentioned a new partnership in 5G technology and cybersecurity, as well as a U.S.-backed plan by LifeZone Metals to open a new processing plant in Tanzania for minerals that go into electric vehicle batteries.

“This project is an important and pioneering model, using innovative and low-emission standards. It is important to note that the raw minerals will soon be processed in Tanzania, by Tanzanians,” she said, adding that the factory would supply battery grade nickel to the United States. and the global market from 2026.

China has invested heavily in Africa over the past two decades, and last November the Tanzanian president met Chinese President Xi Jinping during a state visit to Beijing.

Trade and investment were high on their agenda, with leaders agreeing to “increase bilateral trade and further increase the volume of trade” and China said it would consider providing access to the market for more Tanzanian products.


On Thursday, President Hassan said his “most important request” was to improve the visa process between the United States and Tanzania, as the two countries would benefit from a “long-term visa” that would increase trade and tourism.

Under Hassan, Tanzania returned to international engagement after a period of isolationism imposed by his predecessor John Magufuli, who canceled all foreign trips by his ministers and discouraged travel.

She has won international praise for restoring political rights suspended by Magufuli, who died in office in 2021.

“Madam President, under your leadership, Tanzania has taken important and meaningful steps and President Joe Biden and I applaud you,” Harris said, alongside Hassan.

Magufuli had banned political rallies for anyone other than elected officials, cracked down on Tanzania’s LGBT community and arrested dozens of opposition supporters. He had also rejected COVID-19 vaccines and urged Tanzanians to trust prayer and treatments such as steam inhalation.

Hassan reversed policies when he came to power and earlier this month Tanzania passed the milestone of fully vaccinating 50% of its population against coronavirus.

But human groups say abuses continue, including the government’s targeting of online media. Hassan’s education minister also banned a series of children’s books from schools last month for allegedly promoting homosexuality.

Harris, the latest of several high-level US administration figures to visit African countries in recent months, is due to stay in Tanzania until Friday, when she will depart for Zambia, the final leg of her tour.

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