WHILE telecommunications sector is currently contributing to about 5.2 percent of Tanzania Gross Domestic Products (GDP), it has been revealed that the industry plays a potential role in narrowing gap between rural and urban areas.
World Vision Tanzania, one of the development partners in Tanzania created a program designed to eliminate the developmental gap between rural and urban citizens.
According to organization, development can be improved in the country’s rural, towns and villages by promoting small scale saving groups which comprises of around 30 people.
A report by World Vision Tanzania shows that these saving groups allow people to save money, which can then be invested later or used to pay back loans.
Tanzania targets to transform into middle income country by 2025 and the vision is to create a competitive and sustainable economy with shared benefits.
To succeed in its vision, Tanzania needs to put more efforts on rural development as it is doing in urban, which are to ensure the benefits of the country’s development are shared by all Tanzanians.
One of the efforts done by the country was to connect about 7800 villages with electricity infrastructure by 2022.
Meanwhile, in December 14, 2018, the government and mobile firms signed a contract to expand telecommunication services in remote areas of Tanzania under the Universal Communication Access Fund (UCAF)
The telecommunications sector in Tanzania plays a major role in bridging the gap in rural and urban areas.
It has been noted that farmers are increasingly using their mobile services, notably internet to know the market price of their products, weather and farming skills.
Meanwhile, mobile money services are widely used in rural areas, as it is used in urban to send and receive money for educational, health and economical purposes.
Tanzania’s telecoms companies have certainly made remarkable achievements with regard to improving the development gap. However, barriers to the adoption of mobile internet could cause the pace of recent improvements to slow.
By investing in the next generation of infrastructure, telecom companies can continue to improve mobile internet penetration and ensure more Tanzanians benefit from mobile services.
But in order to invest in the next generation of infrastructure, telecom companies must be convinced that they are investing in a stable, reliable and predictable market. This requires the right balance of regulation and investment incentives.