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Vol 38 No 8

Published 11th April 1997


Baby Tiger

At last some good economic news to bolster President Mkapa's multi-party democracy

Tanzania may not be an economic tiger yet but visitors to Dar es Salaam (population: 3 million and growing fast) can easily see that the sleepy days are over. Everywhere buildings soar upwards. Entrepreneurs are asphalting the once potholed roads. The talk is of balanced budgets and market forces, while most of former President Julius Nyerere's socialist strategies have been junked. In February, the Paris Club of creditors gave up hoping for its money back and relieved Tanzania of US$1 billion of its $7.8 bn. debt. Thus encouraged, the International Monetary Fund opened the $40 million second tranche of the Enhanced Structural Adjustment Programme and the IMF Director for Africa, Goodall Gondwe, praised the country's 'tremendous achievement'. Other aid is promised, after a freeze two years ago because of a tax scandal. The European Union is offering $21.5 mn. towards a $281 mn. project to ease Dar's usual water shortage.

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