By Tendai Matunhu
Zimbabwe and Tanzania signed five Memoranda of Understandings (MOUs) yesterday in a development that is expected to strengthen their relations and build mutually beneficial economic cooperation ties.
The five MOUs signed are, Diplomatic Consultations, Economic, Industry and Trade Cooperation, Cooperation in the Field of Tourism, Promotion of Small to Medium Enterprises and Cooperation towards the Promotion of Women Empowerment, Gender Equality and Community Development.
Speaking to delegates at the 8th session of the Joint Permanent Commission on Cooperation (JPCC) between the Republic of Tanzania and Zimbabwe, minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Rtd Lieutenant General Sibusiso Moyo highlighted that the relations between the two countries have stood the test of time as they share a very long history which dates back to Zimbabwe’s liberation struggle. He also noted that Tanzania is a dependable friend to Zimbabwe as evidenced during the Cyclone Idai aftermath.
“Tanzania has continued to be a dependable friend to Zimbabwe as evidenced by the fact that you were among the first countries in the world to respond with disaster food, medical and other material assistance in the aftermath of Cyclone Idai which devastated parts of Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Malawi in March 2019. That was an act by a friend indeed which the people of Zimbabwe will forever cherish.
“It is against this background of true friendship that we should endeavour to build mutually beneficial economic cooperation that our two Heads of State and Government envisaged when they met in May 2019 during His Excellency President Magufuli`s Official Visit to Zimbabwe. We are, therefore, called upon to deliver on their vision. Henceforth our deliberations must focus on the delivery of tangible results which benefit our peoples,” said minister Moyo.
He said the two countries had registered some successes in their cooperation particularly in the transport sector with direct flights between Dar es Salaam and Harare by both Air Zimbabwe and Air Tanzania in 2016 and 2019 respectively. This, he said, had significantly improved connectivity between the two countries, a development that has opened many opportunities in the tourism industry.
Minister Moyo also said that the two countries also had to look into Wildlife Management for the Tourism sectors to continue to experiencing growth.
He encouraged the private sectors of the two countries to play a supportive and facilitating role in increasing the flow of investment and not just leave the bilateral cooperation to the two Governments. He highlighted that there is great potential in cross border investments involving the private sectors of the two countries.