This popular version provides highlights of the major issues as identified in  a research report


Since at least the mid-2000s, extractive resource politics in Tanzania took a turn to a more resource nationalist governance framework with the Tanzanian government seeking not only to increase fiscal benefits from resource extraction but also to capitalize on resource extraction to bolster industrialisation. Much of the talk has been around promoting local and state participation in extractive activities, leveraging raw minerals to feed into industries, local mineral beneficiation, and increasing revenue capture and management to fund relevant industrialisation interventions such as infrastructure.Tanzania is not the only resource-rich African country that has recently sought to capitalize on its natural endowments to catalyse industrialisation. At the regional level, the African Union adopted the Africa Mining Vision (AMV) in 2009 with the main objective of catalyzing on Africa’s rich natural resource endowment to bolster industrialisation. Across Africa, local content policies have become the common strategy used to link resource extraction to industrialisation and/or economic transformation.

Of course, Tanzania’s urge to achieve a resource-based industrialization does not come from nowhere. Several opportunities exist for Tanzania to capitalize on its extractive resources to promote industrialization. These opportunities include: existence of a wide range of mineral and energy resources which are crucial for industrialization; strong political will to push an industrialization agenda; a supporting sectoral and broader policy and legal framework; and strong government resolve and measures to improve the business and investment environment through, inter alia, regulatory reforms, and construction of mega infrastructure projects

Experience from countries such as Norway, United States of America, South Africa and Zambia which have (un)successfully implemented a resource-based industrialization strategy shows that extractive resources can contribute to industrialization provided there is an enabling policy and legal environment, a transparent, accountable and collaborative/participatory governance regime, concerted investment in education, training and skills development, a clear vision for extractive-industrialization linkages, and institutional and policy alignment. While many of these exist in Tanzania, more still needs to be done before strong linkages between resource extraction and industrialization can be forged. For instance, while many government documents point to a resource-based industrialization, there appears to be no indication that the government is really bent on practically promoting resource-based industrialization. There is no clear vision and/or strategy to link resource extraction and industrialization. Further, emphasis on local content requirements has not gone hand in hand with necessary capacity and skill improvements among the local firms to enable them take advantage of the opportunities.

Potential for extractives to contribute to Tanzania’s industrialization exist. More needs to be done in terms of local capacity building; education and training; research and development; developing a clear policy implementation strategy; improving the business and investment environment; open and participatory governance; legislative stability and/or predictability. The experiences of several countries in implementing local content requirements and other policy measures to push for resource extraction-industrialization linkages offer valuable lessons for Tanzania



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