Tanzania: East Africa's best hope?

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The Economist this week says Tanzania is an "African country that deserves the money it gets". While still very poor, Tanzania is set for 5.8% GDP growth this year and perhaps 6.7% next. A popular president, former foreign minister Jakaya Kikwete, hopes to build up the country's sparse infrastructure, expand access to drinking water, and improve agricultural productivity. What’s so different about a president who makes big plans? Just this:

Mr Kikwete travels with minimal security. He scrolls through several hundred text messages on his mobile phone each day, most of them from ordinary citizens who have somehow obtained his number. Sometimes he texts back.

Suggestions for further reading...Pienso shares a snippet from Business in Africa on the over 350 state-owned enterprises privatized in Tanzania in less than 15 years. One of the promising results from the privatization drive is the tourism sector, as shown in MIGA's case study of the Kilimanjaro Hotel.

Also don't miss Heliotropic on why this renewable energy guru is both hopeful and frustrated by Tanzania's prospects for sustainable energy.

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