FORMALISATION of unofficial ports in the country will help revenue collection and enhance the fight against smuggling, it was disclosed here.
The formalisation process aims to control the flow of goods in and outside the country as well as checking illegal immigrants.
Speaking after visiting Kilwa Masoko port, a member of Tanzania Shipping Agencies Corporation (TASAC) Board of Directors, Capt Mussa Mandia, said preliminary assessment has already been carried out and that procedures are being finalised towards the formalisation of the said ports.
"There are many challenges in business involved in marine transport such as smuggling, illegal fishing and using of substandard vessels. These are among problems which could be addressed in formalising the ports,” he noted.
He said TASAC, Tanzania Ports Authority and regional administrations are working together to identify all unofficial ports and analyse if they can be formalised or not.
“TASAC, TPA and other stakeholders, including offices of Regional Commissioners are working together to address this matter as soon as possible. Our aim is to ensure that revenue lost through these unofficial ports is directed to the government through official channels,” he said.
He said that the formalisation of the ports will also boost various economic and social activities, and thus stimulate economic growth in the country.
Meanwhile, TASAC Acting Vessel Registration Manager, Eng Alfred Waryana warned operators of unregistered vessels to comply with the law.
He asked the public to adhere to the set principles and regulations so as to avoid illegal operations, which endanger their lives and deny government revenue.
At the Kilwa Kivinjeni pier, a fisherman, Mr Juma Ngondaye, said the government has been losing revenue due to smuggling at the area.
“We are very happy the way things are moving forward under President John Magufuli’s administration. We believe that there would be no more smuggling in this area,” he noted.