With a GDP growth of >7% p.a. and a vast and vibrant agricultural sector that contributes 23% to the GDP and employs more than 65% of the country’s population, Tanzania has developed its new agricultural strategy (ASDP II) and is well positioned to transform its agricultural systems and increase the productivity and income of smallholder farmers. The country has high agricultural potential and increasing private sector interest to invest in agriculture.
However, the Tanzanian agricultural sector still needs improvement to become more competitive and foster inclusive economic growth. Areas of improvement include
- sector coordination and evidence-based planning
- access to major grain markets and reduction of post-harvest losses
- coordinated supply chains to match demand and supply of grains and legumes
- development of input systems in some agro-ecological zones.
AGRA’s strategy responds to the country’s needs and prioritizes initiatives that complement the work of other actors to significantly increase smallholder farmers’ income and food security by enhancing productivity, strengthening linkages between market and production systems, supporting government to deliver on its priorities and supporting development of an improved enabling environment. The strategy draws heavily from lessons learned from AGRA’s past investments totaling ~$50 million in Tanzania’s agriculture in input systems development, market development and policy. Planned investment will focus on the following strategic choices:
- Supporting the Government of Tanzania in planning, coordination, implementation and creating enabling environment. This initiative will include partnering with the Government in the roll-out of ASDP II and strengthening the agricultural sector coordination and delivery; as well as creating an enabling policy environment that attracts increased private sector investments.
- Scaling up system and farmer level initiatives in three selected priority agro-economic zones (AEZs)
- Enhancing supply chain efficiency through effective agribusiness deal-making platforms
- Expanded market access through value addition, structured trade, quality enhancement and aggregation
- Strengthened input supply systems and linkages to output markets to facilitate the uptake of yield-enhancing agricultural technologies
Targeted interventions will address critical resource gaps to catalyze private and public sector investments in each of the 3 AEZs with the overall goal of directly impacting 1.5 million smallholder farmers over the next 5 years with the potential to indirectly impact another 2 million smallholder farmers.