Tanzania - Country Commercial Guide
Selling to the Public Sector
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Selling to the US Government

There are significant opportunities for local and foreign companies to supply the government with materials and technology in Agricultural, Information Technology, Infrastructure Development, Energy and Health sector.

The Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) is a body charged with regulatory functions and vested with oversight powers and responsibilities on all public procurement activities carried by all public bodies in the mainland Tanzania. The objectives of PPRA are to ensure the application of fair, competitive, transparent, non-discriminatory and value for money procurement standards and practices in Tanzania.

Public tenders are published on private owned and government-owned newspapers. The government also has an online platform known as Tanzanian National e-Procurement System TANePS where all tenders are published and interested parties can bid online. Through the platform suppliers can receive trainings and get useful guides on how go to about the tendering process.

The TANePS system is relatively new and incorporates functions such as e-Tendering, e-Purchasing, system of e-Auction, provision of e-Payment and e-Contract management.  Nevertheless, the public procurement in Tanzania still can be improved to ensure maximum transparency, machine-readability of data, efficiency of procedures and competitive environment. Tanzania’s new TANePS has the potential to comply with best international practice and adopt open contracting standards to allow unhindered access to public procurement data in machine-readable formats.

In order to access TANePS as a foreign supplier, organizations must register for an account. A specific representative will be designated as the Supplier Admin, and additional Supplier Users can be granted access following successful registration. During the registration process, foreign suppliers will also have the option to identify specific United Nations Standard Product and Services Codes (UNSPSCs) of interest. In doing so, TANePS will automatically notify relevant suppliers via email when a tender corresponding to the specified code(s) is published.

After completing the registration process and successfully activating the profile, each organization is required to pay an annual registration fee of 30,000 TZS. Once payment has been received and the account approved, foreign suppliers can review and apply to open tenders. Tenders can be accessed via a Simple Search of Current Tenders or an Advanced Search that allows suppliers to restrict results by tender category, procurement method, bid submission deadline date, UNSPSCs, and other fields. Suppliers can also update or modify the UNSPSCs for which they would like to receive notifications at any time via the Supplier Management tool.

Additional training videos and user guides on how to use TANePS as a foreign supplier are available online.

The public procurement law applies to any ministry, department or agency of the government, in addition to any corporate or statutory body or authority established by the government. Public procurement law also covers state-owned companies and local government authorities. Public procurement system in Tanzania is decentralized, meaning that all entities covered by the law conduct public procurement activities individually through means available in the country. Centralized procurement is also allowed via the framework agreements. A contracting authority is permitted to enter into a framework agreement, provided that the agreement is arranged by the Government Procurement Services Agency for procurement of common use items and services, provided that the contract is valid only between one and three years.

Under section 2 of the Public Procurement Act, defense and national security organs manage their procurement on a dual-list basis. The dual list covers items subject to open and restricted procurement or disposal methods respectively. The defense or national security organs can use single sourcing whenever they deem it is the most appropriate.

Tanzania is not bound by the World Trade Organization Agreement on Government Procurement (GPA), as it is not a signatory to the GPA and therefore the GPA have not been integrated into the Tanzanian public procurement laws.

U.S. companies bidding on Government tenders may also qualify for U.S.

Government advocacy. A unit of the U.S. Commerce Department’s International Trade Administration, the Advocacy Center coordinates U.S. Government interagency advocacy efforts on behalf of U.S. exporters bidding on public sector contracts with international governments and government agencies. The Advocacy Center works closely with our network of the U.S. Commercial Service worldwide and inter-agency partners to ensure that exporters of U.S. products and services have the best possible chance of winning government contracts. Advocacy assistance can take many forms but often involves the U.S. Embassy or other U.S. Government agencies expressing support for the U.S. bidders directly to the foreign government. Consult Advocacy for Foreign Government Contracts for additional information.

Partnering with local agents/distributors is recommended for any U.S. company bidding on a government tender. A domestic partner can act as a critical set of boots on the ground throughout the procurement process. Local agents are more effectively able to follow-up on the status of a submission, particularly if they have a pre-existing relationship with the government agency in question. Additionally, local actors may have prior experience submitting bids for specific government agencies. They can advise U.S. companies on how best to structure a submission (according to the preferences of that particular agency) as well as how to effectively interface with government stakeholders.

While local partners can hasten the decision-making process and help to navigate corruption, U.S. companies should utilize such partnerships on a project-to-project basis. Domestic dynamics between government agencies and local businesses in Tanzania are constantly shifting, and U.S. companies should not repeatedly rely on the same partner for more than one tender.

Financing of Projects

Multilateral Development Banks and Financing Government Sales. Price, payment terms, and financing can be a significant factor in winning a government contract. Government of Tanzania finance some public works projects through borrowing from the Multilateral Development Banks (MDB). A helpful guide for working with the MDBs is the Guide to Doing Business with the Multilateral Development Banks (PDF). The U.S. Department of Commerce’s (USDOC) International Trade Administration (ITA) has a Foreign Commercial Service Officer stationed at each of the five different Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs): the African Development Bank; the Asian Development Bank; the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development; the Inter-American Development Bank; and the World Bank.