The European Union (EU) has granted a total of 161,5 million Euros (about 441bn/-) to Tanzania, to spur socio-economic projects. Out of the amount, a sum of 111,5 million Euros (about 306,5bn/-) has been dished out in the past three months for boosting energy projects.

This was revealed on 12 July 2021 during a virtual meeting between President Samia Suluhu Hassan and President of the European Council, Charles Michel. From the State House in the capital city of Dodoma, President Samia talked on wide range of issues with Mr. Michel, mainly on relationship between Tanzania and the EU.

In his remarks, the Council's President congratulated President Samia for the various steps she has been taking since taking oath of the office in March this year. He assured the Tanzanian leader that EU will remain to be key development partner to Tanzania and the region at large.

Mr. Michel further commended President Samia for her efforts in the fiight against the global COVID-19 pandemic. He assured the Head of State that the EU was ready to cooperate with various industries that produce vaccines in Africa in order to build their capacity. "If Tanzania needs such support the EU is ready to provide," Mr. Michel affirmed.

On her part, President Samia thanked the EU for according cooperation in various development issues and investment in infrastructure projects through the European Investment Bank. Ms. Samia noted that the Bank gave to Tanzania a total of 50 million Euros (137.4bn/-) for construction and repairing of some airports in various regions. She further explained that during the past three months, Tanzania and EU signed an agreement of 111,5 million Euros (306.5bn/-) for improving energy sector projects, adding value to bee produce, improving business environment and strengthening food security.

Ms. Samia said currently, the Government continues to improve investment climate for the private sector to strive, in a move to enable smooth implementation of the National Five-Year Development Plan (FYDP III). On the other hand, President Samia assured Mr. Michel that her Government will supervise and strengthen democracy, good governance and basic human rights. Speaking on the COVID-19 pandemic, Ms. Samia informed Mr.  Michel that Tanzania has already joined COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access, abbreviated as COVAX.

The COVAX is a worldwide initiative aimed at equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines directed by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, and the World Health Organization. "Tanzania also has its own national strategy for fighting Coronavirus by identifying country's needs that would be presented to the EU for support," she said.

She thanked Mr. Michel for inviting her to visit the headquarters of the European Union and extended her greetings to the President of the EU, Ms. Ursula Von Der Leyen.