Kagame thanks Tanzania’s Magufuli over Dar Reforms
Rwandaâ€™s President Paul Kagame has congratulated his Tanzanian counterpart John Pombe Magufuli for the tough measures taken to improve efficiency of the port of Dar es Salaam that connects the landlocked Rwanda.
The port handles 60% of Rwandaâ€™s exports and imports, making it a key port in terms of handling Rwandan cargo, according to Ministry of Trade.
Indeed, the port of Dar es Salaam acts as a trade gateway for not only landlocked Rwanda but also other states such as Zambia, Malawi, Burundi and Uganda as well as the Eastern Region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
According to the statement issued by the State House of Tanzania, President Kagame congratulated President Magufuli in a special message delivered by Rwandaâ€™s Ambassador to Tanzania, Eugene Sagore Kayihura.
The statement says that President Kagame said he was pleased by the measures taken by President Magufuli to crack down on tax evasion and inefficiency at the port.
In March this year, President Kagame travelled to Tanzania for the Central Corridor Presidentsâ€™ summit, where several projects were committed to facilitate trade within member countries.
Some of the projects and policies agreed on include; reducing transit time spent from Dar-es-Salam to Kigali from 10 to between 3-6 days and harmonizing Rwanda- Tanzania road tolls to $152 from $500 to save traders on both sides from high costs.
However, media reports in Tanzania quoted a recent World Bank report which cited inefficiency at the Dar es Salaam port was costing Tanzanians and other East Africans dearly as they had to pay more for imported goods, including basic products such as crude oil, cement, fertiliser and medicine.
According to the report, in 2012, the total global welfare loss resulting from inefficiencies at the port was estimated to reach value of US$ 1.8 billion for the Tanzanian economy and $830 million for the neighbouring countries.
Recently, President Magufuli expelled the Director-General of the Tanzania Ports Authority(TPA) and some officials in the Transport Ministry over graft and tax evasion allegations.