Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Tanzania's asks for Chinese help for a farming bank

It seems as though Tanzania has good relations with China. The President of Tanzania, Jakaya Kikwete recently toured China. While there, he was able to get the Chinese to help fund an $11 million dollar convention center.

Now, on a recent meeting with the Chinesse ambasodor for the country President Kikwete asks for funding for an agricultual bank to help small farmers.

The Citizen Reporter details the negotiations.

President Jakaya Kikwete has asked the Chinese government to assist in the setting up of an agricultural bank as a joint venture between the two countries.

He said the bank would play a vital role in revolutionazing agriculture regarded as the backbone of Tanzania's economy.

He said the bank would enable Tanzanian farmers boost productivity, thus improve food security and to fight poverty.

"It is agriculture which will redeem us. We need loans for our farmers," he said.

President Kikwete made the appeal at the State House in Dar es Salaam on Monday when he met the Chinese ambassador to Tanzania, Mr Liu Xinsheng.

Ambassador Xinsheng promised to forward the request to Beijing, fully aware that such an institution would enable farmers overcome poverty.


During the talks, Mr Xinsheng presented President Kikwete with architectural drawing of the proposed Julius Nyerere Convention Centre to be built in Dar es Salaam.

Agreement for a grant for the centre was signed in May last year when President Kikwete toured China.

Construction of the centre is expected to cost $11 million (about Sh15.07 billion).

It does have us curious as to why President Kikwete set up a convention center first, then works for an agricultural bank. It seems like farming should be a bigger priority.

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