TOTAL investment of eleven licensed companies housed at the Bagamoyo Special Economic Zone has of May this year reached 62.84 million US dollars (about 144.53bn/-), the Export Processing Zones Authority (EPZA) has said.
The total projected export earnings of the licensed companies operating at the Bagamoyo SEZ which under the EPZA is 177.008bn/-and 1,614 jobs to be created.
Investors in SEZ are guaranteed opportunities provided through the EPZA facilities where 80 per cent of the processed products are for exports market.
The Director of Investment Promotion at EPZA Mr James Maziku said in Kibaha, Coast Region at the ongoing Coast Regional Industrial Exhibition and Investment Forum that most of the licensed companies are at different levels of development with exception of two that are in full operation.
The two licensed companies which are in full operation are namely Africa Dragon Enterprises Limited operating since July 2017. The industry deals with the manufacturing of colorcoated steel coils for export.
The other is Phiss Tannery Limited dealing with processing of leather and leather products for export has been operating since 2013.
However, apart from the outstanding performance registered, companies at the Bagamoyo SEZ face challenges ranging from industrial and transportation infrastructures to difficulties in accessing domestic and regional markets.
He said given the fact that the Bagamoyo SEZ is still at infancy stage of development, it lacks basic industrial infrastructures such as serviced investment plots, power and gas supply lines for the entire zone.
“These infrastructures are supposed to be provided by the government so as to speed up the construction of industrial facilities. Thus investors have to incur extra costs during the course of developing their respective investment,” he said.
Furthermore, the inadequate and poor on site roads at the zone inhibits transportation logistics for construction activities.
Also companies operating under Special Economic Zone (SEZ) scheme are faced with difficulty to access domestic and East African Regional markets resulting from high rates of tax charged on produced goods.
For example, according Domestic Customs Laws, goods off-loaded to the local market from SEZ territory in Tanzania are subject to 23 per cent Value Added-Tax as compared to 18 per cent VAT charged on regular businesses in the country.
The SEZ companies are also faced with difficulty to access the East African regional markets which according to tax regulations are treated as domestic markets.