Moving to Tanzania

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ABOUT TANZANIA

Tanzania, officially the United Republic of Tanzania (Swahili: Jamhuri ya Muungano wa Tanzania), is a country in eastern Africa within the African Great Lakes region. It borders Kenya and Uganda to the north; Rwanda, Burundi, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west; Zambia, Malawi, and Mozambique to the south; and the Indian Ocean to the east. Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain, is in north-eastern Tanzania.

Introduction

The United Nations has estimated Tanzania’s 2016 population at 55.57 million. The population is composed of several ethnic, linguistic, and religious groups.
Tanzania is a presidential constitutional republic, and since 1996, its official capital city has been Dodoma, where the president’s office, the National Assembly, and some government ministries are located. Dar es Salaam, the former capital, retains most government offices and is the country’s largest city, principal port, and leading commercial centre. Tanzania is a one party dominant state with the socialist-progressive Chama Cha Mapinduzi party in power.
Some prehistoric population migrations into Tanzania include Southern Cushitic speakers who moved south from Ethiopia; Eastern Cushitic people who moved into Tanzania from north of Lake Turkana about 2,000 and 4,000 years ago; and the Southern Nilotes, including the Datoog, who originated from the present-day South Sudan-Ethiopia border region between 2,900 and 2,400 years ago. These movements took place at about the same time as the settlement of the Mashariki Bantu from West Africa in the Lake Victoria and Lake Tanganyika areas. They subsequently migrated across the rest of Tanzania between 2,300 and 1,700 years ago.

European colonialism began in mainland Tanzania during the late 19th century when Germany formed German East Africa, which gave way to British rule following World War I. The mainland was governed as Tanganyika, with the Zanzibar Archipelago remaining a separate colonial jurisdiction. Following their respective independence in 1961 and 1963, the two entities merged in April 1964 to form the United Republic of Tanzania.
Tanzania is mountainous and densely forested in the north-east, where Mount Kilimanjaro is located. Three of Africa’s Great Lakes are partly within Tanzania. To the north and west lie Lake Victoria, Africa’s largest lake, and Lake Tanganyika, the continent’s deepest lake, known for its unique species of fish. The eastern shore is hot and humid, with the Zanzibar Archipelago just offshore. The Kalambo water falls in the southwestern region of Rukwa are the second highest uninterrupted fall in Africa and are located near the south-eastern shore of Lake Tanganyika on the border with Zambia. The Menai Bay Conservation Area is Zanzibar’s largest marine protected area.
Over 100 different languages are spoken in Tanzania, making it the most linguistically diverse country in East Africa. The country does not have a de jure official language, although the national language is Swahili. Swahili is used in parliamentary debate, in the lower courts, and as a medium of instruction in primary school. English is used in foreign trade, in diplomacy, in higher courts, and as a medium of instruction in secondary and higher education, although the Tanzanian government is planning to discontinue English as a language of instruction altogether. Approximately 10 percent of Tanzanians speak Swahili as a first language, and up to 90 percent speak it as a second language.

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Geography

At 947,303 square kilometres (365,756 sq mi), Tanzania is the 13th largest country in Africa and the 31st largest in the world, ranked between the larger Egypt and smaller Nigeria. It borders Kenya and Uganda to the north; Rwanda, Burundi, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west; and Zambia, Malawi, and Mozambique to the south. Tanzania is located on the eastern coast of Africa and has an Indian Ocean coastline approximately 800 kilometres (500 mi) long. It also incorporates several offshore islands, including Unguja (Zanzibar), Pemba, and Mafia. The country is the site of Africa’s highest and lowest points: Mount Kilimanjaro, at 5,895 metres (19,341 ft) above sea level, and the floor of Lake Tanganyika, at 352 metres (1,155 ft) below sea level, respectively.
Tanzania is mountainous and densely forested in the northeast, where Mount Kilimanjaro is located. Three of Africa’s Great Lakes are partly within Tanzania. To the north and west lie Lake Victoria, Africa’s largest lake, and Lake Tanganyika, the continent’s deepest lake, known for its unique species of fish. To the southwest lies Lake Nyasa. Central Tanzania is a large plateau, with plains and arable land. The eastern shore is hot and humid, with the Zanzibar Archipelago just offshore.
The Kalambo waterfalls in the southwestern region of Rukwa are the second highest uninterrupted fall in Africa and are located near the southeastern shore of Lake Tanganyika on the border with Zambia. The Menai Bay Conservation Area is Zanzibar’s largest marine protected area.

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Economy & Infrastructure

Tanzania is one of the poorest countries in the world. As of 2014, Tanzania’s gross domestic product (GDP) was an estimated $43.8 billion, or $86.4 billion on a purchasing power parity (PPP) basis. Tanzania is a middle-power country, with a per capita GDP of $1,813 (PPP), which was 32% below the average of $2,673 for the 45 sub-Saharan African countries and ranked 23rd among those countries.
From 2009 through 2013, Tanzania’s per capita GDP (based on constant local currency) grew an average of 3.5% per year, higher than any other member of the East African Community (EAC) and exceeded by only nine countries in Sub-Saharan Africa: the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Lesotho, Liberia, Mozambique, Sierra Leone, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
Tanzania’s largest trading partners in 2012 for its US $5.5 billion in exports were South Africa, Switzerland, and China. Its imports totalled US $11.7 billion, with Switzerland, China, and the United Arab Emirates being the biggest partners.
Tanzania weathered the Great Recession, which began in late 2008 or early 2009, relatively well. Strong gold prices, bolstering the country’s mining industry, and Tanzania’s poor integration into global markets helped to insulate the country from the downturn. Since the recession ended, the Tanzanian economy has expanded rapidly thanks to strong tourism, telecommunications, and banking sectors.
According to the United Nations Development Program, however, recent growth in the national economy has benefited only the “very few”, leaving out the majority of the population. Tanzania’s 2013 Global Hunger Index was worse than any other country in the EAC except Burundi. The proportion of persons who were undernourished in 2010–12 was also worse than any other EAC country except Burundi

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DEMOGRAPHICS

According to the 2012 census, the total population was 44,928,923. The under 15 age group represented 44.1 percent of the population. The population distribution in Tanzania is uneven. Most people live on the northern border or the eastern coast, with much of the remainder of the country being sparsely populated. Density varies from 12 per square kilometre (31/sq mi) in the Katavi Region to 3,133 per square kilometre (8,110/sq mi) in the Dar es Salaam Region. Approximately 70 percent of the population is rural, although this percentage has been declining since at least 1967. Dar es Salaam (population 4,364,541) is the largest city and commercial capital. Dodoma (population 410,956), is located in the centre of Tanzania, is the capital of the country, and hosts the National Assembly. The population consists of about 125 ethnic groups. The Sukuma, Nyamwezi, Chagga, and Haya peoples each have a population exceeding 1 million. Approximately 99 percent of Tanzanians are of African descent, with small numbers of Arab, European, and Asian descent. The majority of Tanzanians, including the Sukuma and the Nyamwezi, are Bantu. The population also includes people of Arab and Indian origin, and small European and Chinese communities. Many also identify as Shirazis. Thousands of Arabs and Indians were massacred during the Zanzibar Revolution of 1964. As of 1994, the Asian community numbered 50,000 on the mainland and 4,000 on Zanzibar. An estimated 70,000 Arabs and 10,000 Europeans lived in Tanzania. Some albinos in Tanzania have been the victims of violence in recent years. Attacks are often to hack off the limbs of albinos in the perverse superstitious belief that possessing the bones of albinos will bring wealth. The country has banned witch doctors to try to prevent the practice, but it has continued and albinos remain targets. According to 2010 Tanzanian government statistics, the total fertility rate in Tanzania was 5.4 children born per woman, with 3.7 in urban mainland areas, 6.1 in rural mainland areas, and 5.1 in Zanzibar. For all women aged 45–49, 37.3 percent had given birth to eight or more children, and for currently married women in that age group, 45.0 percent had given birth to that many children
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LANGUAGES

More than 100 languages are spoken in Tanzania, making it the most linguistically diverse country in East Africa. Among the languages spoken are all four of Africa’s language families: Bantu, Cushitic, Nilotic, and Khoisan. There are no de jure official languages in Tanzania.
Swahili is used in parliamentary debate, in the lower courts, and as a medium of instruction in primary school. English is used in foreign trade, in diplomacy, in higher courts, and as a medium of instruction in secondary and higher education, The Tanzanian government, however, has plans to discontinue English as a language of instruction. In connection with his Ujamaa social policies, President Nyerere encouraged the use of Swahili to help unify the country’s many ethnic groups. Approximately 10 percent of Tanzanians speak Swahili as a first language, and up to 90 percent speak it as a second language. Many educated Tanzanians are trilingual, also speaking English. The widespread use and promotion of Swahili is contributing to the decline of smaller languages in the country. Young children increasingly speak Swahili as a first language, particularly in urban areas. Ethnic community languages (ECL) other than Kiswahili are not allowed as a language of instruction. Nor are they taught as a subject, though they might be used unofficially (illegally) in some cases in initial education. Television and radio programmes in an ECL are prohibited, and it is nearly impossible to get permission to publish a newspaper in an ECL. There is no department of local or regional African Languages and Literatures at the University of Dar es Salaam.
The Sandawe people speak a language that may be related to the Khoe languages of Botswana and Namibia, while the language of the Hadzabe people, although it has similar click consonants, is arguably a language isolate. The language of the Iraq people is Cushitic

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LITERATURE

Tanzania’s literary culture is primarily oral. Major oral literary forms include folktales, poems, riddles, proverbs, and songs. The greatest part of Tanzania’s recorded oral literature is in Swahili, even though each of the country’s languages has its own oral tradition. The country’s oral literature has been declining because of the breakdown of the multigenerational social structure, making transmission of oral literature more difficult, and because increasing modernisation has been accompanied by the devaluation of oral literature.
Tanzania’s written literary tradition is relatively undeveloped. Tanzania does not have a lifelong reading culture, and books are often expensive and hard to come by. Most Tanzanian literature is in Swahili or English. Major figures in Tanzanian written literature include Shaaban Robert (considered the father of Swahili literature), Muhammed Saley Farsy, Faraji Katalambulla, Adam Shafi Adam, Muhammed Said Abdalla, Said Ahmed Mohammed Khamis, Mohamed Suleiman Mohamed, Euphrase Kezilahabi, Gabriel Ruhumbika, Ebrahim Hussein, May Materru Balisidya, Abdulrazak Gurnah, and Penina O. Mlama.
Historically, there have been only limited opportunities for formal European art training in Tanzania, and many aspiring Tanzanian artists have left the country to pursue their vocation.
Two Tanzanian art styles have achieved international recognition. The Tingatinga school of painting, founded by Edward Said Tingatinga, consists of brightly coloured enamel paintings on canvas, generally depicting people, animals, or daily life. After Tingatinga’s death in 1972, other artists adopted and developed his style, with the genre now being the most important tourist-oriented style in East Africa.

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Sports

Football is very popular throughout the country. The most popular professional football clubs in Dar es Salaam are the Young Africans F.C. and Simba S.C. The Tanzania Football Federation is the governing body for football in the country.
Other popular sports include netball, boxing, volleyball, athletics, and rugby

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