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Tanzania hopes port upgrade will strengthen regional hand

Tanzania is beefing up its major port, the Port of Dar es Salaam, to cut delays and cater to rising demand. Planned improvement works are all the more urgent as ports in nearby South Africa and Kenya are also upgrading, as Gordon Feller reports.

In a bid to expand its share of regional trade, Tanzania is investing billions of shillings into a number of transport projects, including a multi-year upgrade of the country’s principal port, the Port of Dar es Salaam.

The port is a gateway for 90% of Tanzanian trade, as well as the access route to six landlocked countries including Malawi, Zambia, Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda and the eastern part of Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). But inefficiencies at the port are costly. Delays can last up to 20 days for everything from everyday items such as nappies and milk, to emergency medical supplies. A 2014 World Bank report found that these inefficiencies cost Tanzania and neighbouring countries up to $2.8bn in lost revenues annually.


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