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India Tanzania Relations

High Commission of India
Dar es Salaam


Tanzania and India have enjoyed traditionally close, friendly and co-operative relations. From the 1960s to the 1980s, the political relationship involved shared commitments to anti-colonialism, non-alignment as well as desire for South-South Cooperation and close cooperation in international fora. The then President (Mwalimu) Julius Nyerere was held in high esteem in India; he was conferred the Jawaharlal Nehru Award for International Understanding for 1974, and the International Gandhi Peace Prize for 1995. In the post-Cold War era, India and Tanzania both initiated economic reform programmes around the same time alongside developing external relations aimed at broader international political and economic relations, developing international business linkages and promoting foreign investment.  In recent years, India-Tanzania ties have evolved into a modern and pragmatic relationship with sound political understanding, diversified economic engagement, people to people contacts in the field of education & healthcare, and development partnership in capacity building training, concessional credit lines and grant projects.

The High Commission of India in Dar es Salaam has been operating since November 19, 1961 and the Consulate General of India in Zanzibar was set up on October 23, 1974.

Visit of the Prime Minister of India to Tanzania

Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi paid a State Visit to Tanzania from 9-10 July 2016. He met the President of Tanzania, Mr. John Magufuli for bilateral talks after a ceremonial welcome and interacted with Solar Mamas and the Indian community. During the visit, the following MOU/agreements were signed:

  • MOU on Cooperation in the field of water resource management and development
  • Agreement on Joint Action Plan between National Small Industries Corporation of India and Small Industries Development Organization of Tanzania
  • Visa waiver agreement for Diplomatic/Official passport holders (entered into force in December 2016)
  • MOU for the Establishment of Vocational Training Centre at Zanzibar
  • Line of Credit of US $92 million for rehabilitation and improvement of water supply system in Zanzibar


Other recent visits

The then Vice President of Tanzania, Mr. Mohammed Gharib Bilal attended the India Africa Forum Summit-III in New Delhi on 28- 29 October 2015. He also held a bilateral meeting with the Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi on 29 October 2015 and received the Minister of State, Mr. Dharmendra Pradhan for a meeting on 28 October 2015. The Summit adopted a Joint Declaration ‘Partners in Progress: Towards a Dynamic and Transformational Development Agenda’ and Framework for Strategic Cooperation between India and Africa. Zanzibar’s Second Vice President Ambassador Seif Ali lddi visited New Delhi and Kerala in March 2017 for various working level and business interactions.  Hon. Charles Mwijage, Minister of Trade, Industry & Investment visited New Delhi for the 4th Joint Trade Committee meeting in August 2017. Hon. Medard Kalemani, Minister of Energy attended the Founding Conference of the International Solar Alliance on 19-20 March 2018, and Hon. Ummy Ally Mwalimu, Minister for Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children attended the Delhi End TB Summit in March 2018. A delegation from the Centre for Foreign Relations of Tanzania visited Foreign Service Institute in New Delhi in Aug 2018.

Earlier, the Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (Independent Charge) & Parliamentary Affairs Mr. Rajiv Pratap Rudy visited Tanzania (Sept 2015). He met the then President of Tanzania, Mr. Jakaya Kikwete and handed over Prime Minister’s invitation for the Third India Africa Forum Summit. Secretary (ER), Ministry of External Affairs held bilateral consultations in Dar es Salaam in June 2016. Other visits included those by CSIR delegation led by Secretary, DSIR & DG-CSIR in June 2017 and Admiral Sunil Landa, Chief of Naval Staff/Chairman, Chiefs of Staff Committee in July 2017.

Past high-level visits                                                                                                                         

The two countries have benefitted from a long tradition of high level understanding and exchanges, including visits between the then President Dr. Julius Nyerere and the Indian leadership. In the post-Neyerere period, high level visits from India included those by the then Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh (May 2011), the then President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam (Sept 2004), and then Prime Minister Mr. I.K. Gujral (Sept 1997). The then Speaker of Lok Sabha Mrs. Meira Kumar visited Tanzania in Sept-Oct 2009 and then External Affairs Minister Mr. Yashwant Sinha visited Tanzania in April 2003. Other Ministerial visits included those by the Minister of State for Commerce and Industry (Sept 2013), Minister of State for External Affairs (July 2013 and Aug 2003), Minister of Steel (April 2013), and Minister of Science & Technology and Earth Sciences (Dec 2011). 

From Tanzania, high level visits were undertaken by the President of Tanzania, Mr. Jakaya Kikwete (June 2015 and April 2008), President of Zanzibar Dr. Ali Mohammed Shein (Feb 2014), Prime Minister Mr. Mizengo Pinda (Sept 2009), Vice President Dr. Ali Mohamed Shein (March 2008), President of Zanzibar Mr. Amani Abeid Karume (March 2004), and President Mr. Benjamin Mkapa (Dec 2002).

Ministerial visits included those by Zanzibar’s Minister of Finance of Tanzania (March 2017), Tanzania’s Minister of Trade and Industry (Nov 2014), Minister for Water (July 2014), Minister for Energy and Minerals (Jan 2014), Zanzibar’s Minister for Labour, Economic Empowerment & Cooperatives (May 2013), Minister of Communication Science & Technology (March 2013), Minister of Health and Social Welfare (March 2013), Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Food Security and Cooperatives (March 2013), Minister of Industry and Trade (Jan 2013), Minister of Industry & Trade (Oct/Nov 2012), Speaker of the National Assembly (Oct 2012), Minister of Defence and National Service (March/April 2012) and Minister for Finance (March 2012).

Bilateral Treaties & Agreements

In addition to the MOUs/agreements signed during the Prime Minister’s visit to Tanzania (July 2016), India and Tanzania have signed a number of bilateral Treaties/MOUs/Agreements. They are:

  • Agreement on Friendship & Technical, Economic and Scientific Cooperation (1966)
  • Trade Agreement (1972)
  • MOU on Technical Cooperation in the field of Posts and Telecommunications (1996)
  • Agreement on the establishment of Joint Business Council (1997)
  • Agreement on the establishment of a Joint Trade Committee (2000)
  • MOU for Co-operation in the field of Agriculture and Allied Sectors (2002)
  • Agreement in the field of Health & Medicine (2002)
  • MoU on Exchange of Programme on Co-operation in the field of Education (2003)
  • MOU on Defence Cooperation (2003)
  • Agreement on Waiving Tanzania’s Outstanding Loans (2004)
  • Agreement on Cooperation in Information Technology and Services (2004)
  • Letter of Intent on Preferential Trade Agreement/Free Trade Agreement (2008)
  • MOU on joint venture between National Social Security Fund, Ministry of Health and Social Welfare of Tanzania and Apollo Hospitals Ltd. (2011)
  • Agreement on Double Taxation and Prevention of Fiscal Evasion (2011). Earlier DTAA was signed in 1979.
  • Joint Action Plan between National Small Industries Corporation Ltd and Small Industries Development Organisation (2011)
  • Letter of Intent between Ministry of Steel and Ministry of Energy & Minerals (2013)
  • MOU for Cooperation in the field of Hydrography between Tanzania and India & Protocol on exchange of Hydrographic Data (2015)
  • MOU between the East Africa Statistical Training Center (EASTC) in Tanzania and the National Statistical System Training Academy in India on establishing a collaborative program in official statistics (2015)
  • MOU between EASTC and Indian Council of Agricultural Research - Indian Agricultural Statistics Research Institute (2015) 
  • MOU on Cooperation in the field of Tourism (2015)
  • Loan Agreement between Exim Bank and Government of Tanzania on line of credit for US$ 268.35 million for extension of Lake Victoria pipeline project (2015)
  • Agreement between WAPCOS (Public Sector Unit under M/o Water) and Government of Tanzania for preparation of DPR for Lake Victoria pipeline project (2015)
  • Agreement on gainful occupation of dependents of members of diplomatic missions and consular posts of India and Tanzania (2016)
  • Joint Action Plan for Cooperation between Council for Scientific & Industrial Research of India and Tanzania Industry Research and Development Organization (2016)
  • MOU on Cooperation between Jawaharlal Nehru University of India and University of Dar es Salaam (2017)
  • Loan Agreement between Exim Bank and Government of Tanzania on line of credit for US$ 500 million for water supply projects in 17 towns across Tanzania (May 2018) 

Commercial and Economic Relations

India and Tanzania enjoy a vibrant business and commercial relationship. India is a leading trading partner of Tanzania comprising 18% of Tanzania’s foreign trade. India is also among the top five investment sources in Tanzania and as per Tanzania Investment Centre, Indian investments in Tanzania add up to USD 2.2 billion.. Major Indian companies and brands are present or operating in Tanzania include Bank of Baroda, Bank of India, Canara Bank, Tata International Limited, Bharti Airtel, National Mineral Development Corporation, insurance companies (LIC, NIC, United India, etc), Kamal Group of Industries, Escorts, Ashok Leyland, Eicher, Bajaj, TVS, Kirloskar, Shapoorji Pallonji, Larsen & Toubro, Godrej.

India-Tanzania Trade [in million US dollars]







2018 (Jan-June)

India’s exports







Tanzania’s exports














[Source: Tanzania Revenue Authority]

Tanzania’s major imports from India include petroleum products, pharmaceuticals, motor vehicles, two/three-wheelers, wires and cables, electrical machinery/equipment, articles of iron & steel, sugar etc. Tanzania’s major exports to India include gold dore, cashew nuts, pulses, timber, spices (mainly cloves), ores and metal scrap, gemstones, etc.

There are periodic visits of business delegations in both directions to pursue commercial and collaboration opportunities. There are periodic visits of business delegations in both directions to pursue commercial and collaboration opportunities. A delegation from India Trade Promotion Organization and Confederation of Indian Footwear Industries visited Dar es Salaam for promotion of the India International Footwear Fair (July 2018). The Cashew Export Promotion Council of India visited Mtwara, Dodoma & Dar es Salaam (June 2018) and a Study in India fair was held in Dar es Salaam (May 2018). In February 2017, about 25 Indian companies led by PHARMEXCIL visited Dar es Salaam, where a business roundtable and B2B meetings were held. An Indian education fair was held in Tanzania (May 2017), FIEO participated at the 13th Tanzania Trade Show (Nov) with over 42 participating companies and a delegation from the Council of Leather Exports (Dec). Other business delegations included those by Kerala Cashew Board Ltd (Nov), Indian Oil (Nov), Incredible India pavilion at Swahili International Tourism Expo (Oct), PLASTINDIA Roadshow (Sep), and East African International Trade Expo (Aug). From Tanzania, a business delegation attended the Tanzania-India Business & Investment Forum meeting in New Delhi (Aug). Tanzanian delegations have also attended a number of fairs in India including IPHEX-2017 (April), India International Footwear Fair (Aug), I for Afrika Conference (Nov), etc.

A delegation of over 50 Indian businesspersons visited Tanzania in July 2016 coinciding with the visit of the Prime Minister of India to Tanzania. Since then, 46 companies led by CHEMEXCIL participated at the Indian Chemical and Cosmetics Exhibition at Dar es Salaam (July), a delegation from the Solvent Extractors’ Association visited Dodoma and Dar es Salaam (July) on oilseed sector (sunflower), more than 50 companies led by PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry participated at the East Africa International Trade Expo (July), a three-member Air India delegation visited Tanzania to conduct feasibility study for the possibility of recommencing operations to Tanzania (Aug), a delegation from Kerala Cashew Corporation visited Dar es Salaam and Mtwara to explore the possibility of increasing trade between India and Tanzania (Oct), a delegation of more than 30 companies led by Federation of Indian Export Organization participated at the 12th Tanzania Trade Show (Nov), about 25 Indian companies led by APEDA visited Dar es Salaam (Dec).

High Commission of India, Dar es Salaam also organizes business promotion seminars and facilitates participation of Indian businesses in exhibitions and fairs across Tanzania and supports business opportunities between the two countries. In the recent past, the High Commission organized business seminars and exhibition of Indian products at Mwanza (24 Aug 2018), Morogoro (22 March 2018), Mtwara (3 March 2018), Arusha (11 May 2017), Dodoma (3 Feb 2017), Tanga (Nov 2016) and Mbeya (March 2016). Indian Business Forum is a local organization representing Indian businesses in Tanzania and taking up their issues (www.ibf.or.tz)

Development Partnership

Development partnership between India and Tanzania dates back to the 1960s comprising of technical cooperation, capacity building and joint projects. Tanzania is a major beneficiary of training courses allocated under India’s ITEC/SCAAP programmes, and under IAFS capacity building cooperation. Starting with 24 trainees annually in 1972, it has gradually increased to about 400 trainees for Tanzania in 2017-18. 24 scholarships for undergraduate, post graduate and doctoral degrees were offered to Tanzanian nationals for academic year 2018-19 by ICCR under the Commonwealth Scholarship/Fellowship Plan and General Cultural Scholarship Scheme.

India has executed a number of projects under government grants and soft loans in Tanzania. Three IT/Communication projects have been completed: A Centre of Excellence in ICT at the Dar es Salaam Institute of Technology by C-DAC in 2011; ICT Centre at the Nelson Mandela African Institute for Science & Technology by C-DAC in 2016 and the Pan African e-Network Project by TCIL in 2010. India set up a radiation therapy machine at Bugando Medical Centre, Mwanza through Panacea Technologies in July 2016. India also extended support of US$250,000 for Kagera earthquake relief in September 2016. In August 2017, over 1,30,000 NCERT Science & Mathematics text books for Secondary Public Schools in Tanzania from India were handed over to the Minister of Education, Science, Technology & Vocational Training. A Vocational Training Centre (VTC) is currently being established under an Indian grant in Zanzibar Islands. Hydrography cooperation towards navigational charts of harbours and capacity building support is another active area of bilateral cooperation.

Under a Credit Line of US$ 178.125 million for development of water supply projects in Dar-es-Salaam and coastal Chalinze region, the water supply project from Upper Ruvu River to Dar es Salaam was completed in Aug 2016. This was inaugurated by the Tanzanian President Dr. John Pombe Magufuli on 21 June 2017. Works have been ongoing on the Chalinze and water distribution networks in Dar es Salaam but delayed. Earlier a Credit Line of US$ 36.56 million for supply of trucks and other vehicles to the Tanzanian People’s Defence Force (TPDF) was executed in 2013-14. Another Credit Line of US$ 40 million for supply of tractors and agricultural equipment was completed in 2013.

India has also extended a Credit Line of US$ 268.35 million for water supply projects in Tabora, Igunga and Nzega in western Tanzania. President of Tanzania Dr. John Magufuli and High Commissioner of India presided over the ceremony for the commencement of the works for the water project in July 2017. During the Prime Minister’s visit in July 2016, a Credit Line of US $92 million for rehabilitation and improvement of water supply system in Zanzibar was signed. The agreement became effective on 20 February 2017 and an agency for preparing DPR has been identified.  LOC of US$ 500 million for water projects in 17 towns in Tanzania was approved in 2017, and the LOC Agreement was signed on 10 May 2018.


An Indian Cultural Centre (ICC), Dar es Salaam under the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), coordinates cultural outreach since its establishment in December 2010. The ICC offers lessons in Yoga, tabla and other musical instruments, and Hindi language by Indian teachers. An Indian cultural festival entitled “Namaste Tanzania, Habari Tanzania” took six Indian cultural performances to eight cities of Tanzania over Oct-Nov 2016. Among other major recent programmes held by the ICC were yoga session to commemorate the visit of three Indian Naval Ships (23 March 2018), Kabaddi tournament in Dar es Salaam (11 March 2018), World Hindi Day in Dar es Salaam (Jan 2018), Dr. Ambedkar’s birthday (April 2017), World Hindi Day (Jan 2017), Children’s Day (Nov 2017), Gandhi Jayanti at the University of Dar es Salaam (Oct 2017), Constitution Day (Nov 2016), Birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel (Oct 2016), Hindi Divas (Sept 2016), performances by ICCR-sponsored Manipuri dance group (Sept 2016), India Golf Cup (Aug 2016), Kabaddi trainers camp & Dr. Ambedkar Memorial Kabaddi Tournament (April 2016).   

Some of the latest cultural performances in Tanzania include Gujarati folk dance performances in Dar es Salaam and Arusha (Aug 2018), concert by Indian Naval band in Dar es Salaam (March 2018), Tamil Karagam peacock folk group in Dar es Salaam (Jan 2018),  Gujarati folk dance by Saptak group in Dar es Salaam, Zanzibar, Arusha and Mwanza (Nov 2017), Bhangra folk group performance in Dar es Salaam, Mwanza, Shinyanga and Tabora (Oct 2017), Odissi dance in Dar es Salaam and Arusha (Oct 2017),  Rajasthani dance performance in Dar es Salaam & Arusha (July 2017), Bharatnatyam dance in Dar es Salaam & Arusha (July 2017), Bhangra & Giddha presentation in Dar es Salaam & Arusha in May 2017 and Rajasthani music & dance in Dar es Salaam & Dodoma in February 2017. Safi theatre of Tanzania and National dancing troupe from Zanzibar participated in Surajkund Fair in India in 2017 and 2018 respectively, and Bujora dance group of Tanzania participated at the Africa Festival organized by ICCR (May 2018).

The fourth International Day of Yoga (IDY) was celebrated in Tanzania on 17 June 2018 at Dar es Salaam, Dodoma, Tanga, Arusha, Mwanza, Shinyanga, Nzega, Tabora, Morogoro, Lindi, Iringa and Mbeya. The major event at the Uhuru Stadium, Dar es Salaam, witnessed about 5000 people led by the Minister of Information, Culture & Sports of Tanzania. Tanzanian under-17 national football team participated in a football tournament in Goa (May 2016) and the Tanzanian Kabaddi team participated at the World Kabaddi Tournament in Punjab (Nov 2016).  Several programmes organized with local content, include Indo-African fusion music in cooperation with the Department of Arts and Music of Dar es Salaam University, rangoli exhibition, photographic exhibitions, fashion show, Hindi comedy show, mono-artiste from India performing a skit on Swami Vivekananda, exhibition of paintings and sculptures of local artistes, film screenings, public receptions for iconic Indian celebrities, including Grandmaster Vishwanathan Anand have been held at the Indian Cultural Centre.

Fourth International Day of Yoga 2018video

Third International Day of Yoga 2017 video

Indian Community

Tanzania has about 50,000 people of Indian origin [referred to as Asians], which are concentrated in the major urban centres of Dar es Salaam, Arusha, Mwanza, Dodoma, Morogoro, Zanzibar, and Mbeya. The vast majority are from Gujarat, mainly from Kutch and Kathiawad regions whose ancestors came to this region [Zanzibar and Tanganyika] in several phases starting from early 19th century as merchants, sailors and workers. The Indian origin community is active in the field of trade and industry in Tanzania.  There are about 10,000 Indian nationals [expatriates] mostly professionals, who live and work in Tanzania, mainly in industry and services.

There are about twenty Indian/Asian community organizations active in Tanzania. These groups regularly organize Indian festivals and social events mostly with local participation and occasionally by inviting performing artistes from India. In January 2017, a Convention of Indian Diaspora brought together members of the community from different parts of Tanzania.

Useful Resources

Website: http://www.hcindiatz.org/
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/IndianInTanzania
Twitter page: https://twitter.com/IndiainTanzania
India Global- AIR FM Gold Program featuring India and Tanzania Relations (4/4/2014):

High Commissioner’s interview to Capital TV (19/09/2017):
Part 1/3 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fXmqBYpVvMk
Part 2/3 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DR0_kU_Aq-E
Part 3/3 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1inwJbBJqK4

High Commissioner’s interview to Channel 10 (28/01/2018):  
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwnvX6uSoXM


Indian Navy Band’s performance in Dar es Salaam (March 2018):
- https://tinyurl.com/yd3f7a3g
- https://tinyurl.com/y7vxxpdn
- https://tinyurl.com/ybaqo9e5

August 2018