In a deliberate move to open the economy of Iringa Region, President Samia Suluhu Hassan’s administration has outlined expansion plans of 9,750 hectares of irrigated land and construction of strategic roads and the Nduli Airport.
President Hassan expressed the intention during a public rally held at the Samora Stadium in Iringa, expressing optimism that the move will open up the region and promote social economic activities.
She said the expansion of irrigated land which will be implemented in a block farming model, aimed at getting more people especially the youth into farming, and that the expansion will add to the current, thus totalling 28,819 irrigated hectares.
“Plans are underway, so that by September this year, the new block farming project will be in operation, and since farming goes hand in hand with livestock keeping, then I urge all those involved, to do it commercially,” she instructed.
The President who is in Iringa for a three-day official tour which ends latter today, she further said: “I was briefed that the region is a home to 348,846 cattle, and 183,180 goats while sheep accounts to at least 69,894; you need to provide on the basis of the market needs, this is done once you do it commercially.”
The President insisted that the construction of the said infrastructures, will add more value to the tourism industry, as the Ruaha park and other tourism attractions will be easily reached adding that: “The government has also allocated special land in Kihesa-Kilolo whereby hotels and conference centres are to be built.”
The president urged those with land parcels in the area to start building, these include Tanzania Building Agency (TBA), National College of Tourism (NCT), the Arusha International Conference Centre (AICC) and the likes.
Laying down the foundation stone for expansion of the Nduli Airport in the region, President Hassan said the move should boost trade and other economic activities. “People should produce commercially and benefit from the airport. The laying of the foundation stone is a sign that after 18 – 20 months the airport will be able to host large aircrafts with capacity of carrying 70 passengers and above,” she said.
She said being the major producer of avocados, timber and tea, citizens should use the airport in reaching their produce to market and boost tourism at Ruaha National Park and other attractions.