View of Dar es Salaam, the largest city in Tanzania

Support for new political course Parliamentary State Secretary Kofler visits Tanzania

Press release 13 August 2022 | BERLIN – Dr Bärbel Kofler, Parliamentary State Secretary in the BMZ, today left for a visit to Tanzania, which will focus on feminist development policy and women's equal participation. Her visit comes at a time at which the Tanzanian government under President Samia Suluhu Hassan is putting an increased focus on political dialogue and international cooperation.

Symbolic image: outlines of people, overcoming gender boundaries

Dr Kofler said, “Tanzania is embarking on a new path. We want to have a discussion with our partners on the ground about ways in which we can support the country's development. Using the potential of girls and young women and strengthening their rights will play a key role in this. Above all, structural disadvantages and discrimination need to be addressed, because the empowerment of women leads to better development for all. It reduces hunger and poverty and improves social cohesion.”

One aspect of particular importance in Tanzania is assistance for women and girls who are experiencing violence at home or at school. The country has one of the highest rates of pregnancy among 15-to-19-year-olds worldwide. Such very early pregnancies deprive many girls of the opportunity to complete school or vocational education and make their own choices in life and, what is more, they often constitute a major health hazard.

Dr Kofler stated, “I am glad that we will be working together to protect women and girls in Tanzania from violence. We will be able to build on earlier successful cooperation projects, for instance in the fields on maternal and child health, family planning, and health insurance for pregnant women and newborns.”

Germany has partnered with Tanzania in development cooperation for more than 60 years, with a focus on climate-smart water supply, biodiversity conservation, and good governance.

Dr Kofler said, “I greatly welcome the fact that, under President Samia Suluhu Hassan, Tanzania has increased its cooperation with the international community again. We find it important to ensure that biodiversity conservation will benefit all people and create economic opportunities. I want to discuss this challenge with the government and with civil society. I will also ask the government to invite the international UNESCO mission to the Selous World Heritage site.”


Background

Giraffes in a national park in Tanzania

Even though Tanzania has experienced remarkable economic growth in the past few years, with a growth rate of 6 per cent, it is still one of the poorest countries in the world. On the United Nations Human Development Index (HDI), Tanzania ranked 163rd out of 189 countries in 2020. However, until the COVID-19 crisis, Tanzania’s economy was one of the strongest in sub-Saharan Africa. The crisis led to a massive decline in revenues, especially in nature tourism. At the same time, the population is growing very rapidly (at 3.1 per cent), which is diminishing the development gains that had been made. Two thirds of the population are under the age of 24. As a biodiversity hotspot, Tanzania is of global importance for biodiversity conservation.

The Selous Game Reserve has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1982. Since 2018, a major dam with a hydropower station has been under construction there. Since the beginning of the work, Tanzania has been under an international obligation under the World Heritage Convention to invite a Reactive Monitoring Mission conducted by IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) to take stock of the situation in the Reserve. So far, Tanzania has not yet invited the Mission.