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Tanzania, Turkey Sign Six MOUs to Strengthen Bilateral Ties, Voice Concerns Over Gaza – The Chanzo

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Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan witnessed the signing of six memorandum of understanding in the areas of education, economic diplomacy, and cultural cooperation.

This took place during a function at Turkey’s presidential complex in Ankara, where President Erdoğan welcomed President Samia on her state visit. President Samia is in Turkey for a state visit that commenced on April 17 and is expected to conclude on April 20, 2024.

Before the official state reception on April 18, 2024, President Samia was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Economics by the University of Ankara.

During the joint press meeting, President Samia described Türkiye as a ‘valued partner to Tanzania’ and Erdoğan said Tanzania is one of the ‘most important partners in East Africa’.

“Going forward we have agreed that our ministers and team of experts meet and come up with a framework that can be used to strategize on the implementation of the agreed area of cooperation,” explained President Samia during the meeting.

Following President Erdoğan’s visit to Tanzania in 2017, trade and investment between Tanzania and Türkiye has continued to surge. It’s estimated Türkiye investment in Tanzania reaches about USD 414 million, employing about 6,062 Tanzanians.

The value of Turkish exports to Tanzania has surged from $144 million in 2013 to $253 million in 2021, ranking Tanzania among the top 11 importers, while Tanzanian exports to Turkey remain small at about USD 15 million per year.

READ MORE: How Turkey is Building Its Influence in Tanzania

Turkey has significantly contributed to construction projects in Tanzania, particularly through Yapi Markezi, a Turkish construction company. The firm secured contracts worth $5 billion for the Standard Gauge Railway project, marking one of the most substantial deals for a Turkish company on the continent. Turkish firms have also secured several contracts in shipping and road construction.

On April 19, 2024, President Samia will participate in the Türkiye-Tanzania Business Forum in Istanbul to entice more Turkish businesses to invest in Tanzania.

The two presidents also had a moment to discuss the ongoing crisis in Gaza, where President Erdoğan emphasized the need to step up efforts to stop the killings in Gaza, he said: “An immediate and lasting ceasefire must be achieved as soon as possible, and then we must straightaway take steps to realize a two-state solution.”

On the other hand, President Samia commended and supported Türkiye’s role in seeking a pacific settlement of the international dispute, she said: “We repeat our call for an immediate cessation of hostilities in Palestine and hindering humanitarian access to the people of Gaza.”

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