Zanzibar projects economic growth of 6.8pc this year

Friday April 29 2022
Zanzibar Island, Tanzania

Stone town and prison Island in Zanzibar Tanzania. The economy of Zanzibar is projected to grow by 6.8 percent this year, up from 5.1 per cent last year PHOTO | FILE | NMG


The economy of Zanzibar is projected to grow by 6.8 percent this year, up from 5.1 per cent in 2021, the archipelago’s second Vice President has said.

In his budget speech Wednesday, the VP Hemed Suleiman Abdulla said the increased growth rate in the Isles is attributed to the global reduction of Covid-19 infections.

He also attributed it to the assisting financial packages received from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Bank of Tanzania (BoT) respectively to boost the archipelago’s economy last year.

IMF gave a $100 million soft loan while BOT gave it a “special loan.” The IMF money went on to stimulate the water, education, health and tourism sectors.

VP Abdulla said the growth projection will partly depend on the arrival of international tourists in the archipelago given that the Ukrainian-Russian war will end soon.

“The expansion will be the result of the increase of entries of tourists, which is projected to reach 450,213 this year if the Ukrainian-Russian conflict will be over soon.”


Earnings from exports in the Isles have been on the rise by 138 per cent from Tsh65.7 billion ($28,134,317) in 2020 to Tsh155.6 billion ($66,631,654) accrued last year due to a surge in exportation of cloves and seaweed.

The leasing of islets to the riches in the world recently has also been mentioned by the VP to have contributed to the witnessed and forecasted upward trend of the economic growth.

The government got $15 million as upfront leasing fees for the 10 islets, recently.

Inflation has however been hard to tame owing to global hiked fuel prices, the VP said adding that as of last February the inflation rate was at the range of 2.9 per cent which was a slight higher than the previous 2.8 percent.

Efforts made to control food-instigated inflation as of recently included the slashing of import duties by almost half from $600 per tonne to only $350 for sugar, rice and flour but as to no avail.

Other reasons attributed to the expansion of the archipelago’s economy include among others state house tight marking of government officials who are responsible for spending the public funds; the booming construction industry and the decision by additional international airlines to make a stop in Zanzibar like the Air France, Azuri Air, Edelweiss, Global Airways and Eurowings.