Tanzania First-Quarter Economic Growth Rises on Farming, Energy

Economic growth in Tanzania, sub-Saharan Africa’s fourth-largest gold producer, expanded 7.5 percent in the first quarter from 7.4 percent the same period last year, the National Bureau of Statistics said.

The pickup was led by agriculture, manufacturing and energy while mining dragged on growth, Morrice Oyuke, director of economic statistics, told reporters today in the commercial capital, Dar es Salaam. Figures for the previous three months haven’t been updated, according to a separate statement.

“The drop in the mining sector was mainly due to reduced gold and diamond production,” Oyuke said. “Tulawaka stopped gold mining in the first quarter due to its license expiring,” he said, referring to the African Barrick Gold Ltd.-owned mine.

Mining accounts for about 4 percent of gross domestic product and the government wants to increase its share of the economy to 10 percent by 2025, according to the Tanzania Chamber of Minerals and Energy. Companies including Petra Diamonds Ltd. and AngloGold Ashanti Ltd. also operate mines in the country, which is the only known source of tanzanite.

Growth in mining eased to 4.7 percent in the first quarter from 23.8 percent a year ago, while farming expanded 1.4 percent from 0.4 percent and energy production to 6.3 percent from 5.1 percent. Tanzania is a natural gas producer.

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