Pakistan and Tanzania proactive in fostering closer trade ties.

Last August, Pakistan’s High Commissioner to Tanzania, Siraj Ahmad Khan, announced a major ambition and wants to see double the trade between the two countries within two years. With bilateral commerce between Islamabad and the East African country already valued at $224 million, Khan believes business can surpass $400 million by 2025.

Pakistan has become an important trading partner for Tanzania in recent years, which now imports hundreds of millions of dollars worth of textiles, agricultural produce, and many other products from the South Asian country. Islamabad similarly imports many essential and luxury goods, including tea, cotton, and tobacco, from small businesses in Tanzania.

Both countries have been proactive in fostering closer trade ties. For example, establishing a Joint Business Council has helped fuel more rapid growth in trade volume. But while the two economies are broadly well-aligned, given both are centred largely around the agricultural space, obstacles are still blocking the further development of the trade relationship. Removing these obstacles is crucial if a new era of Pakistan-Tanzania trade ties is to be realised successfully.

Many Pakistani investors struggle to take full advantage of fast-growing markets in Tanzania and Africa because conducting critical cross-border transactions remains challenging. At the moment, if a Pakistani business wishes to purchase a product or service from a counterpart in Tanzania, they will be confronted with several issues.

Securing the required foreign exchange, ensuring local banks settle the transaction, and clearing both countries’ complicated customs procedures are just three elements in a laborious, time-consuming, and expensive process. The delays and costs imposed by this complex process effectively create a ceiling to the trade between Pakistan and Tanzania – ultimately stunting economic growth in both countries.

However, technological solutions that help solve these challenges are now emerging. Tanzania is now one of the leading hubs in Africa for finance, technology, and e-commerce solutions – and is home to dozens of companies creating innovative new solutions that simplify and streamline international trade.

E-Digital Africa, for example, has built a payment gateway called Chapbuy that connects African and Asian supply chains. This gateway, built in collaboration with local partners in Pakistan and Tanzania and with full regulatory approval in both countries, facilitates instant digital cross-border transactions between businesses on the two continents.

The solution removes the obstacles businesses face when wishing to access international markets. More broadly, technology like this is an important part of how we unleash the full potential of Pakistan-Tanzania trade.

Indeed, lucrative opportunities are available for Pakistani businesses and investors in East Africa. Over the last decade, Tanzania has experienced extremely strong GDP growth of approximately 7% annually. Furthermore, in 2021, Tanzania saw more than $1 billion in foreign direct investment, with investors increasingly attracted by the country’s stable economy, accommodative regulatory environment, and pro-business government.

Tanzania’s location at the heart of East Africa also makes it an ideal springboard for exposure to the wider region, which includes some of the fastest-growing markets anywhere in the world.

For these reasons, trade between Pakistan and Tanzania is rising, but there is much more potential for closer economic relations. New technological solutions mean that closely integrated supply chains and seamless, cross-border digital solutions are now available for Pakistani businesses looking to boost their exposure to East Africa.

Those who take advantage of this opportunity could benefit from the strong growth Tanzania, and its regional counterparts are set to experience in the years ahead.

Author: Moris Kakengi, Founder of E-Digital Africa in Dar-es-Salaam


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  1. Muhammad Mubshir Asif

    Fabolous information

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