National Land Use Planning Commission Targeting Sustainable Economic Development
The National Land Use Planning Commission facilitates preparation, implementation and enforcement of land-use plans for rural and urban areas throughout Tanzania, working under the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Human Settlements Development and in partnership with other ministries. The Commission has developed a “National Land-Use Framework Plan” for Tanzania which focuses on national policies for sustainable land use development and investment. One of the plan’s goals is to attract foreign investors in potential areas.
Gerald K. Mango, Director General, explains, “We aim that the plan will help investors target the right places and ensure that there are no land use conflicts with local communities and ecological sensitive areas. We want to encourage a friendly relationship between local people and investors and to make sure that local communities have enough land for settlement, economic activities i.e. agriculture, livestock keeping, forestry and social services while also creating investment opportunities.” Land use plans are enforced through coordinated monitoring with local governments, by observing laws, regulations and guidelines.
Large-scale farming and ranching to use 18.7% of total land area
The Commission has developed a program to determine exactly how much land each sector will use; for example, the plan envisages for 18.7% of Tanzania’s total land area to be devoted to large-scale farming and commercial ranching while 29% is to be reserved for forestry and wildlife preserves including tourism. Urban settlements (including industrial development and agro-processing) and intensified farming and grazing account for 17.5%.
The National Land Use Framework Plan program is creating new investment opportunities. Mr. Mango says, “We are focusing on large-scale farming, raising its percentage of land use from the current 2% to 18.7%; because we want agriculture to become a significant contributor to Tanzania’s GDP as well as a reliable source of food. There are many investment opportunities available in agriculture and food processing. In fact, Tanzania has enormous underutilized potential, particularly in agriculture, forestry and ranching, and we welcome foreign investors in these areas.”