Tanzania Celebrates Continued Partnership with Norway for Agricultural Development 

*SAGCOT Hosts Ambassador Tone Tinnes in Iringa, Morogoro 

The Southern Agricultural Growth Corridor of Tanzania (SAGCOT) is delighted to announce the recent visit of Her Excellency Madam Tone Tinnes, the Norwegian Ambassador to Tanzania, to the SAGCOT region, focusing on the Ihemi and Kilombero Clusters across the Iringa, Njombe, and Morogoro Regions.

During a three-day tour from March 13th to 15th, 2024, Ambassador Tinnes closely observed the progress in productive agriculture, coinciding with the evolution of SAGCOT into ACGOT – Agriculture Corridors of Tanzania. This new initiative seeks to extend coverage to every agricultural corridor within the country.

Ambassador Tinnes engaged with regional government officials and various SAGCOT partners, emphasising the critical role of collaboration and support in enhancing sustainable agricultural growth, food security, and economic development within Tanzania.

The visit underscored Norway’s commitment to fostering agricultural development through responsible, private-sector-led, and environmentally conscious initiatives, aligning with SAGCOT’s core objectives.

Reflecting on the 60 years of diplomatic ties between Tanzania and Norway, Ambassador Tinnes underscored President Dr Samia Suluhu Hassan’s historic Norway visit, which led to the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on food security and agriculture. She affirmed Norway’s sustained support for SAGCOT.

Tanzania has undergone a significant transformation in the agricultural sector since 2011. Partners like SAGCOT are catalysing innovation for enhanced food security, economic prosperity, and sustainability. The insights gained from the fields clearly indicate that the newest challenge is how to scale up valuable initiatives,” noted Ambassador Tinnes.

Morogoro Regional Commissioner, Hon. Adam Kighoma Malima, expressed gratitude to Norway for its longstanding support of Tanzania. He also thanked Norway for its unwavering backing of SAGCOT throughout its development. 

“SAGCOT was established during my tenure as Deputy Minister for Agriculture, Food Security, and Cooperatives. Now, serving as the Regional Commissioner in Morogoro, it is gratifying to observe that SAGCOT’s principles continue to be embraced. The initiative has adapted to changes and overcome the inherent challenges associated with adopting new systems. Reflecting on the past decade, the lessons learned and the obstacles that have been surmounted are clearly evident,” noticed the RC.

Acting  Iringa Regional Administrative Secretary, Mr. Elias Luvanda, provided a comprehensive update on the progress and obstacles in the implementation of SAGCOT initiative in the Iringa region. In a detailed briefing to the Ambassador, Mr. Luvanda emphasized the collective achievements and persistent challenges in agricultural development within the Ihemi cluster, which includes the Iringa and Njombe regions.

“Through the unwavering dedication of our public and private sector partners, we have been able to turn the SAGCOT initiative into a catalyst for agricultural transformation in the Iringa region,” Mr. Luvanda remarked. “Our collaborative efforts have ushered in an era of increased productivity, enhanced market accessibility, and significant improvements in agricultural practices.”

He said the SAGCOT initiative has catalyzed a productive partnership between various stakeholders, including farmers, investors, businesspersons, and government authorities, leading to remarkable strides in agricultural productivity and sustainability across several districts.

Among the notable achievements, Mr. Luvanda highlighted the role of strategic partnerships with companies like Yara, SeedCo, Silverlands, and HZPC in providing quality agricultural inputs. These efforts have substantially increased production in key crops such as avocados, soybeans, tomatoes, tea, potatoes, milk, and chicken. The SAGCOT Centre’s facilitation of dialogue between private and public sector partners has also been crucial in streamlining policy and fostering a conducive investment climate.

“However, our journey is not without its hurdles. We are confronted with challenges that threaten the pace of our achievements, including the need for continuous education for our extension officers, the scarcity of milk testing facilities, inadequate infrastructure, limited resources, and the looming threat of climate change,” Mr. Luvanda stated, emphasizing the importance of addressing these issues to sustain agricultural growth.

Despite these challenges, the meeting with Ambassador Tinnes highlights the region’s dedication to overcoming obstacles and leveraging partnerships and resources for the advancement of the Iringa region’s agricultural sector. The SAGCOT initiative remains a cornerstone of Tanzania’s vision for sustainable agricultural development and economic prosperity.

“In our quest for agricultural excellence, we are reminded that every challenge presents an opportunity for growth and innovation,” Mr. Luvanda noted, underscoring the region’s resilience and optimism.

Hon Dunstan Kyobya, the District Commissioner of Kilombero, expressed his gratitude towards SAGCOT and other stakeholders for their unwavering support in agriculture, which has been pivotal in including various groups that are facilitating transformative growth in the sector. 

Additionally, he acknowledged the contributions of  Noway whose efforts have significantly bolstered the ongoing agricultural initiatives, further cementing the partnership between local communities and international allies in driving sustainable development.

The CEO of the SAGCOT Centre stated, “Since its inception in 2010, Norway has been a steadfast supporter of SAGCOT. We deeply appreciate the ongoing support and partnership with the Norwegian government, which has been fundamental in our endeavors to propel agricultural innovation and the empowerment of smallholder farmers. This collaboration has been pivotal through clusters, compacts, and other innovative models, enabling us to enhance productivity and sustainability in the agricultural sector.

He thanked Ambassador Tinnes for visiting very remote areas where agricultural innovation is taking place, showcasing the future of Tanzania in the quest to feed the region for greater food security and economic prosperity through agriculture. 

In Iringa, the team visited Green Valley Agro at Kichakani Village, a commercial horticulture seed producer for export. This company works with local villagers, training them in best practices and how to improve their produce including application of the climate-smart agricultural technologies. The team visited GBRI Business Solution, a woman-owned business, aggregating avocados for the international market. In Morogoro, the team visited poultry entrepreneur Mr Eugene Paul Kavishe of Vonkavy AGRO Company, which can produce 35,000 eggs every day.

At the border of Iringa and Morogoro Regions, the delegation met with the VIWAVI COCOBA Group, a collective of approximately 30 youths who, are selling onions by the roadside, with no hope of a better tomorrow but SAGCOT convinced them to form a group, and provided support in 2021.  Since then, they have transformed into commercial farmers on a small scale, scaling up gradually thanks to the efforts of SAGCOT.

“The visionary approach of SAGCOT has been a catalyst for change, ushering in remarkable advancements in productivity, sustainability, and economic growth. As the founder of GBRI Business Solutions, I’ve seen the transformative impact of this partnership firsthand on our operations and across the community. A heartfelt thank you to SAGCOT for initiating such profound positive change and for propelling social development that extends well beyond our fields.” – Hadija Jabiri, Founder & MD, GBRI Business Solutions

Mr Amiri Mgoye, a 25-year-old father of two and member of the group, shared his vision: “You see that baobab tree? I aim to grow in all aspects of life—business, family, and skills—aiming to become as grand as that tree. The SAGCOT team has opened my eyes, showing me that I can achieve substantial growth gradually, both as part of a team and individually.

Ms. Hidaya Matajiri, a 50-year-old single mother of six and a member of Wosia wa Baba, a conservation farming group based in Udzungwa, shared her experience: “Beekeeping has transformed our lives, both as a group and on an individual level. Despite the challenges of being a single mother, it has given me hope.”

 “Before we engaged with SAGCOT, our community in Lusitu Village, Njombe Region, was primarily organized around burial groups. It was our way of coming together, a reflection of our communal spirit in times of loss. We established a collective group with a vision beyond the immediate, venturing into agriculture as a business. This journey towards productivity has not only been enlightening but also rewarding. Remarkably, from a single avocado tree, we now harvest 150 kilograms of fruit per season, and our potato yields have soared to about 200 bags per acre.” – Beno Mgaya, Lusitu Village, Njombe Region

Tanzania and Norway have recently strengthened their bilateral relationship by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on food security and agriculture. The agreement was signed on February 14, 2024, during Tanzanian President Dr Samia Suluhu Hassan’s state visit to Norway. The MoU marks a renewed commitment to enhancing Tanzania’s agricultural sector and ensuring food security. It comes as the two nations celebrate 60 years of friendship and cooperation, reflecting on a history of collaborative efforts in various sectors, including agriculture.


Established as a public-private partnership, the SAGCOT Centre acts as the operational arm tasked with facilitating and overseeing the implementation of the Southern Agricultural Growth Corridor of Tanzania (SAGCOT)’s ambitious goals. Its primary mission is to foster inclusive, sustainable agricultural development and market growth, thereby improving food security, reducing poverty, and ensuring environmental sustainability across Tanzania’s southern corridor.

By building on the achievements of the SAGCOT Centre and adapting to the evolving needs of Tanzania’s agricultural sector, the transition to AGCOT is set to play a pivotal role in achieving the sustainable transformation of agriculture envisioned by the SAGCOT initiative. This ongoing commitment to enhancing the agricultural value chain, coupled with a strategic focus on technology, finance, climate change adaptation, and partnerships, will be vital in driving forward Tanzania’s agricultural development in the coming years.


Morogoro Regional Commissioner, Hon. Adam Kighoma Malima, and Her Excellency Madam Tone Tinnes, the Norwegian Ambassador to Tanzania, in a tête-à-tête at the Regional Commissioner’s office in Morogoro, on March 15th, 2024.

Date: March 17, 2024,

SAGCOT Centre, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania