The construction of the Bagamoyo Port in Tanzania is set to begin this year. The Tanzania Minister for Works, Transport and Communication, MakameMbarawa, said the government was in final talks with investors of China Merchants Holdings International Limited (CMHI) and the government of Oman, who are collaborating to deliver the port.
Also, to be constructed around Bagamoyo area are over 190 industries, including the manure processing industry that will be put up by the government of Oman.
Mr.Mbarawa told parliament in Dodoma that although mooted in 2013, the project has been hit by delays because the government had to ensure that every project has wider impact to the country’s economy.
CMHI managing director Hu Jianhua said in a statement in a recent interview that the company would run Bagamoyo port as one of its overseas ports.When fully developed, the Bagamoyo Special Economic Zone will attract about 700 industries to become a strategic investment zone in East Africa.
The mega project, to be built at Bagamoyo, only 75 kilometres from Dar es Salaam, will be over 20 times of the existing Dar port. The project which was initially estimated to cost US $ 11 billion will have capacity to handle 20 million containers annually.
Tanzania is East Africa’s second-biggest economy after Kenya, and cargo volumes at the existing Dar es Salaam port are expected to rise. The project will dwarf Kenya’s port at Mombasa, east Africa’s trade gateway about 300 km (180 miles) to the north, and aims to capitalize on growth in a region seeking to exploit new oil and gas finds.
However, those who are opposed to the construction of the port ask if Bagamoyo is the right location for a port, given its closeness to Dar es Salaam and far from gas deposits off Tanzania’s southern coast. Critics also say that the growth of Tanzania economy does not justify construction of a port of that magnitude.
“We are warning the government that with the pace of the economic development, the country will never attract ships of over 6,000 Twenty Foot Equivalent Units (Teus) in the coming 25 years,” Tanzania Shipping Agents Association (TASAA) chairman Peter Kirigini said in 2015.
“What we need to do is to invest and upgrade the current port including designing the berth 1 to 7 to get deep drafts, put ship to shore gantry cranes, improve process and automate systems and we can achieve higher productivity and volumes and survive up to 20 years without the need for a new port,” he said, adding that this investment should go hand in hand with the widening the entrance channel to cut down berth exchange time.
Across the region, fast-growing economies have launched infrastructure projects at a scale unprecedented in most of Africa. Kenya, one of the biggest Tanzania competitors, is upgrading Mombasa port and has taken keen focus on the long-delayed mega port in Lamu.
The country has also completed the first phase of the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) connecting Mombasa and Nairobi.
The Bagamoyo plan was unveiled during a visit of the Chinese premier in 2013. It is meant to ease congestion in Dar es Salaam and transform a depressed area into a trade and manufacturing hub.
“Bagamoyo is a really good example of a white elephant,” said an analyst. “If you’re going to have two major ports, then isn’t the place to have it in the south, where the gas is?”
An African Development Bank (AfDB) report done earlier shows that Burundi has about 285 million metric tons of nickel reserve after it was discovered in 1974.
The extraction was however hindered by lack of infrastructure following civil war in the mid-1990s that halted development and limited economic growth. Burundi’s nickel-ore reserves stretch from the south to the northeast of the country.
Nickel is used in many specific and recognizable industrial and consumer products, including stainless steel, alnico magnets, coinage, rechargeable batteries, electric guitar strings, microphone capsules, and special alloys. It is also used for plating and as a green tint in glass. .