Minister of State Sherlock to visit Tanzania
Political and economic relations and Irish Aid projects focus of visit
The Minister of State for Development, Trade Promotion and North-South Co-operation, Seán Sherlock, TD, will visit Tanzania from March 17th to 20th to deepen Ireland’s relations with Tanzania as well as viewing a number of Irish Aid supported projects.
Minister Sherlock will meet key government Ministers to discuss Irish-Tanzanian relations and will have a chance to meet with the small but vibrant Irish community in Dar es Salaam and Arusha during St Patrick’s Day celebrations.
Speaking ahead of his visit, Minister Sherlock said:
“Ireland and Tanzania have a long history of partnership stretching across many decades including those prior to Tanzanian independence when Irish missionaries first arrived in Tanganyika and created strong bonds between our two peoples. This partnership has contributed to Tanzania’s social and economic progress.
“Through Irish Aid, our development programme is focused on improving livelihoods of smallholders and livestock farmers, improving food security and nutrition response, particularly for women and children, and enhancing the quality of local health services. This year we will provide over €26 million to Tanzania, as a Key Partner Country, to continue this vital work.”
Highlighting the Government’s commitment in to increasing sustainable trade and investment which will benefit Ireland and Tanzania, Minister Sherlock said:
“Our current merchandise trade is already in the region of €15 million per year. I am looking forward to the future when Tanzania will become a much more significant market and trading partner for Ireland.”
On Wednesday, Minister Sherlock will visit Malala Village in Meru District where he will see a dairy programme, established with the help of the national Agricultural Sector Development Programme, which has benefited from Irish Aid support since 2005. From Mulala village, the Minister will travel into Arusha where he will see the work of the Irish Aid funded, Farm Radio International, which uses ICT, radio, text messages and voice transmissions to provide real time information and feedback to farmers. The approach is a very cost-effective way of reaching farmers with the most up-to-date information from research centres.
The Minister’s programme also includes a visit to Losinoni, a Maasai pastoralist village where he will witness the impact of climate change on nomadic farmers and see how it can cause conflict over resources. The development work in this village is supported by Irish Aid and is a good example of how community-based conflict resolution can resolve difficult issues in a sustainable manner. The Minister will then visit parish facilities in a suburb of Arusha city, which was built by Irish missionaries with Irish Aid support.
The Minister will also visit Zanzibar to meet with Government leaders including the First Vice President and Second Vice President. At the request of the Zanzibar Government Minister Sherlock will share Ireland’s experience of peace-building and conflict resolution. The Minister will also visit the House of Representatives which will be in session. This will be followed by a courtesy call on the Speaker of the House.
16 March 2015
Note for Editors:
• Irish Aid is the Government’s overseas development programme. It is managed by the Development Cooperation Division of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
• Irish Aid has been providing development assistance to Tanzania since 1975 and launched its aid programme in 1979 with the opening of the Embassy of Tanzania in Dar es Salaam.
• The overall goal of Ireland’s current country strategy for Tanzania (2011-2015) is inclusive growth, reduced poverty and vulnerability. The programme budget for 2015 is €26.01 million.
• The programme is focused on improving livelihoods of smallholders and pastoralists, improving food security and nutrition response (particularly for women and children) and enhancing the quality and equity of local health services.
• Bilateral merchandise trade with Tanzania was valued at €15.04 million in 2013. Exports amounted to €14.35 million (an increase of 0.5% on 2012) and imports were valued at €716,000 (an increase of 98% on 2012).