Organization: Gatsby Charitable Foundation
Location: Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
The Missing Linkages: Value added and the Tanzania Textile and Garment Sector.
Industrial activity is important to economic diversification and improved livelihoods, which underpin inclusive growth. Industrialization is contingent on state’s policy autonomy and capacity to develop and implement industrial stages. For primary commodity export-dependent countries such as Tanzania, economic diversification is best achieved through the promotion of value-added industrial activities, as has been asserted in the state’s recent Integrated Industrial Development Strategy 2025. However, international financial institutions, and the World Bank in particular, continue to promote a narrow focus on export-oriented foreign direct investment-led growth, favouring primary commodity export. This paper will explore Tanzania’s incipient efforts to industrialize in a post-adjustment era, through analyzing the textile and garment sectors. Textile sectoral strategies from 2000 onwards will be examined to assess alignment with broader value addition goals, and the factors that may affect policy implementation. This paper will suggest that sectoral strategies have been beset by policy coherence and coordination hurdles. Most striking is the omission of policy interventions to increase value addition and improve domestic linkages, which may be indicative of the difficulty in challenging dominant policy prescriptions.