Tanzania Economy Sectors

By | October 25, 2021


Agriculture occupies the majority of the active population, participating for almost 27% in the formation of the national income. However, arable and arborescent crops have at their disposal a very small portion of the territorial surface (5.6%). The best soils are destined for export crops. Coffee is in great demand, which has become the main export commodity. It is grown in mountainous areas, in particular on the slopes of Kilimanjaro (especially in the Moshi region ) and in the Bukoba area, W of Lake Victoria.. Equally important is cotton growing, which was introduced in Tanzania from Sudan and is also practiced in small plots; among the areas of greatest diffusion are those of Mwanza, near Lake Victoria, and further inland of Shinyanga, then the areas of Morogoro, in the hinterland of Dar es Salaam, of Kilwa Kivinje and of Lindi, in the southern section of the coast. Other important productions are sisal, peanuts, citrus fruits, pineapples and throughout the coastal region; in Zanzibar there is the coconut palm. Cloves are the main resource of the islands of Zanzibar and Pemba, which hold almost the world monopoly. Subsistence agriculture is based on cereals, especially corn, which is especially widespread on the humid slopes of the North; followed by millet and sorghum, rice, present mainly in the areas close to Lake Victoria, and wheat; the cultivation of cassava and sweet potato is practiced almost everywhere; Finally, for local consumption, various horticultural products are grown (beans, potatoes, onions, etc.) and even more fruit, which find their ideal environment in the coastal region. § Approximately 43% of the national territory is covered by forests and scrublands; the most luxuriant forest expanses cover the slopes of Kilimanjaro and Meru, well sprayed by the rains, as well as further to the S the Uluguru mountains. Forest exploitation is largely represented by essences of great value, such as ebony and cedar, and by bamboo. § The farm has vast areas of grass and permanent pasture and, for some populations, especially for the Masai, constitutes the main, if not the only economic resource; however, it is generally an activity conducted with antiquated, not very productive systems, which focuses on the number of cattle rather than on their quality. § Fishing has a certain economic weight, a very widespread activity along the coasts but even more widely practiced in inland waters, especially in Lake Victoria. However, this is a poorly organized sector as a whole, lacking above all suitable canning facilities; most of the catch is immediately sold in the various local markets.


According to allcountrylist, the industrial sector occupies approx. 17% of the active population (2006); manufacturing activity is directed mainly to processing of local products and is therefore represented by sugar, complex milling, oil mills, breweries, textile mills (cotton mills in prevalence); there are also tobacco factories, furniture factories, cement factories, some chemical plants (nitrogen fertilizers in Dar es Salaam and Tanga) and rubber. An oil pipeline since 1966 connects Dar es Salaam, site of an important refinery, to Ndola (Zambia). § Although mineral resources are not abundant, since the beginning of the new millennium there has been a widespread interest of foreign operators in this sector. Mostly diamonds (from the Shinyanga region), gold (object, together with silver, of intense smuggling), brine (obtained from salt pans near Dar es Salaam), spring salt (Uvinza), gems (Arusha) and phosphates (Minjingu). Offshore Songo-Songo Island, oil and natural gas are extracted. The hydroelectric plants have been upgraded (the most important is the one on the Pangani River); the Kidatu and Mtera dams ensure a large part of the electricity production.


Internal trade, once largely carried out by Indians, is certainly not very intense, limited as it is by the very modest income received by the vast majority of the population. Foreign trade has characteristics similar to those of many African developing countries: export of raw materials and minerals (coffee, tea, cotton, diamonds, etc.) and import of machinery and means of transport, fuels, industrial products and food in general. The trade balance denounces very heavy liabilities; the trade takes place mainly with Great Britain, Germany, Italy, India, Japan and Malaysia. § The network of communication routes is still rather lacking, although the railway one, born as a route of penetration from the coast towards the plantations of the interior, has a decent development, at least on a continental scale. Fundamental was the realization, implemented with the technical and financial assistance of China, of the Tan-Zam (ie Tanzania-Zambia), which came into operation in 1975 and which connects Dar es Salaam with Kapiri Mposhi, in Zambia; the other main railway section (2200 km) of the country connects Dar es Salaam with Kigoma, on Lake Tanganyika, passing through the new capital Dodoma, while a branch leads to Mwanza, on Lake Victoria. The road network included (2005) a total of 78,893 km, however, for the most part not passable during the rainy season; among the main arteries is the road between Dar es Salaam and central Zambia, built, to supplement the railway, with funding from Sweden, the United States and the World Bank. Quite lively are the port activities, which mainly refer to the port of Dar es Salaam, followed by those of Tanga, Mtwara and Zanzibar. Inland navigation still plays an important role; on lakes Victoria, Tanganyika and Niana, scheduled boats connect Tanzania with almost all neighboring countries. Tanzania disposes. at the beginning of 2000, of a fair number of airports, but the main airport naturally remains the international one of Dar es Salaam. § A good source of income is tourism, a sector that has been growing continuously since the mid-1980s. Tanzania continues to invest to adapt accommodation capacity to international demand fueled by the country’s extraordinary natural beauty.

Tanzania Economy Sectors