UONGOZI Institute and the National Economic Empowerment Council (NEEC) jointly organised a one-day Local Content Stakeholders’ Workshop, which took place on 16th October, 2018, in Dodoma.

The workshop, which was officially opened by The Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office, Policy, Parliamentary Affairs, Labour, Employment, Youth and the Disabled, Hon. Jenista Joakim Mhagama (MP), discussed and validated the proposed “National Multi-Sector Local Content Guidelines”. Representatives from the public sector, private sector, academia and civil society were in attendance.

Delivering introductory remarks, Mrs. Beng’i Issa, Executive Secretary of the NEEC said the Guidelines were developed to ensure implementation of economic empowerment initiatives.

“Our aim is to ensure that key stakeholders across all sectors increase local participation in opportunities arising from investment projects.”

Mrs. Issa further stated that currently, there are fifty-seven local content coordinators in each Ministry and some Government institutions, charged with the responsibility of ensuring citizens’ participation in investment projects.

She added, “The Guidelines will therefore provide coordination frameworks for local content initiatives at the national and local level.”

On behalf of the CEO of UONGOZI Institute, Mr. Kadari Singo, Head of Executive Education said research shows that local content and participation are critical for the profitability and sustainability of investment projects, and further elaborated on how the Institute’s programmes contribute to the acceleration of the two.

“For about five years, through our Natural Resource Management programme, we have been conducting research, delivering training and organising forums that aim to enhance local content and participation in Tanzania, particularly in the industrial sector.”

In her address, Minister Mhagama stressed that Tanzania’s fifth-phase Government has set a target of ensuring Tanzania becomes a middle-income country by 2025, through implementation of strategic projects.

Hon. Jenista Joakim Mhagama (MP) delivering Opening Address.
Hon. Jenista Joakim Mhagama (MP) delivering Opening Address.

Minister Mhagama further emphasised, “To fully engage citizens in these strategic investment projects, each stakeholder needs to understand their roles and ensure implementation.”

She noted several large development projects that are being implemented in the country; including construction of the Standard Gauge Railway, Stieglers Gorge and Port, and investments in the extractive sector; and said “The Guidelines couldn’t have come at a better time.”

Minister Mhagama underlined that the Government intends to put the Guidelines into practice before the end of this year, and directed all local content coordinators to follow and report on them accordingly.

Minister Mhagama further emphasized the importance of cooperation among stakeholders for increased local participation and economic empowerment, and closed with a Swahili proverb; Kidole kimoja hakivunji chawa (a single finger does not break a louse).