The SAGCOT corridor (see figure 4) is characterized by a state-driven commercialization and intensification of agriculture through public-private partnerships. Since national food insecurity and poverty remain the main challenges for the agricultural sector, a transition from a land-extensive and low-input subsistence agriculture to high-input and market-oriented production has been suggested by development institutes. Thus, in 2009, the national resolve ‘Kilimo Kwanza’ (Swahili for ‘agriculture first’) provided a set of strategies and policy interventions with a focus on the commercialization and modernization of agriculture through public-private partnerships. SAGCOT was designed to actively foster an integration of local production into commercial interregional and international value chains and as a result transform the SAGCOT area into a highly commercialized agricultural growth region. The Tanzanian government, together with private investors, now aims at exploiting the favorable availability of natural resources (land, soil, water) in the Rufiji Basin (mainly lowland rice in the Kilombero Cluster, and potatoes, field vegetables and dairy products in the Ihemi Cluster) for large-scale mechanized production to satisfy a growing national demand, but partially also targeting the international market. Year-round crop production entails an expansion of cultivated land area but also investments in (irrigation) infrastructure, increased size of production units, and the provision of links to national and international markets.
University of Dar es Salaam
National Institute for Medical Research