FOR several years, Tanzania had been eagerly setting plans and hopes that it would be one of the continent’s most successful economic growth stories.
On Wednesday, the World Bank officially classified the largest East African country as a lower middle income economy under its latest country income classification.
Tanzania has become the second country in East Africa to climb to that crucial economic growth after Kenya.
The attainment of the goal, which the government had planned to achieve in 2025 means a lot to Tanzanians, who collectively worked hard along with the government to enhance its economic status.
On Thursday, economists talked to the ‘Daily News’ , saying the move would enable the country register major steps in uplifting its economy and improve the living status of ordinary wananchi in general.
It will also open up opportunities for promoting an inclusive economy.
The Director of Research at the Research on Poverty Alleviation (REPOA), Dr Lucas Katera, said for the move to facilitate meaningful changes in the prospects of ordinary people, policy makers must come up with policies that will directly enable every Tanzanians to participate in economic growth (inclusive economy).
He said the lower middle income status was an opportunity for ordinary citizens since it would create various economic opportunities.
“Being a middle-income economy, we have promoted the nation and created interest for investors to come. There will be plenty of opportunities; Tanzanians should get ready to participate in the coming projects,” he noted.
University of Dar es Salaam professor, Esther Ishengoma said the achievement must keep all wananchi awake and continue to work hard so as to stay on the right track.
“What is needed now is to maintain the pace. We are glad that President John Magufuli still has five more years to reign, and take us even further,” said Prof. Ishengoma.
She stated that there were several things that the country should consider to ensure it stays on the right track and continue rising; including embracing the news of attaining middle-income economy status positively.
She stressed that the slogan ‘Hapa kazi tu’ should not lose its tempo.
“Now is the time to work harder and not lose focus on where we want our country to head,” she said.
The Microfinance and Small Business Development Professor pointed out that, with the nation having a high population of youth, it is time to tighten the leash for the youth in the country.
“We need to educate our youth, lead them in a way that enables them become more creative, vigilant, and innovative; providing them with the bounty of opportunities available in the country so that they stop being handout dependents and idle,” she remarked.
Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE) Chief Executive Officer, Mr Moremi Marwa, said the move was the overall indication that the country was moving fast on the right direction.
Thus moving as a country, means every citizen is involved in the economic changes and therefore classifying the country as a low middle income economy means majority Tanzanians are involved in the changes, he elaborated.
Orbit Securities Head of Research and Analytics, Mr Imani Muhingo, said classification to lower middle income country means more visibility to investors in various sectors, in conjunction with the frontier market reclassification for the DSE late last year.
This means the move opens the country to big investments, which in turn create jobs, increase revenues and improve social services for ordinary citizens. He noted that technically, it means Tanzania has more wealth today than yesterday.
“This doesn’t come without a burden. Becoming a MIC means increasing economic independence and losing some incentives, financial aid and preferential trading that would be provided to lower income countries,” said Mr Muhingo, an economist cum-broker.