Oman, Tanzania joint investments likely to touch $1.5bln

Muscat – Oman and Tanzania have embarked on talks for joint investment that may run up to $1.5 billion following the visit of President Samya Suluhu Hassan to the Sultanate.

The Tanzanian President, the first woman head of state of the country, arrived in Oman last Sunday on a three-day visit to meet His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik.

She had talks with members of the ministerial cabinet as well as leading business people in a bid to iron out new investments strategy between the two countries.

In a flurry of official statements released by the government offices during his visits, the two countries agreed to hold further talks to invest jointly in projects from agriculture, mining, fisheries, tourism projects to oil and gas ventures. Neither side put a figure on the joint investments between them but business analysts estimated the total cost will be “substantial”.

“For the scope of the joint investments which they put on the table, it would not be less than $1.5 billion. It is a substantial outlay that involves many ventures in different fields in the next five years. Taking into account their historical ties in the last few centuries, the two countries have a lot in common and that is why they feel it is the right time to move forward into business investments,” Mohammed al Harthy, an independent analyst, told Times of Oman.

While President Hassan, the first Zanzibari-born to become President of Tanzania, was in Oman, the two countries established a joint investment fund between them but the amount was not specified.

She also wooed private investors into investing into private projects when she met business owners in a meeting at the Bustan Palace Hotel.

“We have already made it easier for investors to enter the Tanzanian market, including guaranteeing the safety of their investments with political certainty. Oman is special to us since both sides have families in the two countries bound by our shared long history,” she told Omani business people who attended the meeting.

Zanzibar, which was an independent country, united with Tanganyika to form the Republic of Tanzania in April 1964.