Four out of 10 Tanzanians—17 million people—live in poverty. Since the vast majority live in rural areas, improving agricultural productivity, increasing market access and promoting investment are the most effective ways of increasing rural incomes.
USAID is enhancing agricultural productivity through the expansion of irrigation and market access by reducing transport costs for farm inputs and products, thereby increasing Tanzania’s competitiveness in domestic and regional markets. Through Feed the Future, USAID promotes policies that provide an enabling environment for private sector investment in agriculture, create more consistent trade policies, assist in the implementation of more gender equitable policies, and enable the implementation of key nutritional interventions.
By working with the Ministry of Finance and the Bank of Tanzania, USAID improves management information systems for tracking expenditures as well as strengthens national capacity to monitor and build resilience to economic shocks. USAID has supported the creation of financial products for banks to refinance struggling horticultural enterprises and worked with local microfinance institutions to significantly expand services.
Through the Partnership for Growth, the United States is working to accelerate and sustain broad-based economic growth in a select group of four nations, including Tanzania. A joint U.S.-Tanzanian team has determined inadequate power supply and rural roads as the most binding constraints to growth and are plotting a framework and implementation plan spanning 2012-2016 that will address these constraints by coordinating development partners and leveraging private investment.
USAID is helping Maasai women in Tanzania gain literacy and numeracy skills so that they can obtain land rights, start businesses, and become involved in local government. By 2011, more than 2,000 women had completed the program. Their new communication skills allow them to conduct business activities more easily and empower them to assert their rights. For the first time in their lives, these women are earning incomes independently through small enterprises and farming. One graduate of the program says, "It has helped me to mobilize other women because the program saw potential in us."
Last updated: May 10, 2013