By peter Nyanje The Citizen Reporter Dar es Salaam. Tanzania is set to overtake Kenya as East Africa's biggest economy by 2030 if the current Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate remains the same, according to Standard Chartered Bank forecast. Currently, at GDP value of $36 billion, Kenya is the largest economy in East Africa and it ranks as sixth in Africa, according to Razia Khan, the Standard Chartered Bank regional head of research in Africa, who also projected Kenya's GDP growth rate at 6 per cent. At the same time, Ms Khan shows in her presentation that Tanzania is the second largest economy in the region and ninth in the continent with its GDP measuring $23 billion. With a GDP growth rate of seven per cent, Ms Khan's projections put Tanzania in the sixth largest economy in the continent and first in East Africa at $230 billion. By then, Kenya would have retarded to seventh position in Africa, one position behind Tanzania, with $217 billion GDP, Ms Khan's projections show. While in 2011, South Africa leads as the strongest economy in the continent with its GDP at $555 billion, but come 2030, with constant GDP growth rates, Nigeria, which holds second position currently, would overtake it. By then, Nigeria, whose current GDP is estimated at $415 billion and growth rate of 7.5 per cent would lead the continent economically with a GDP of $1,640 billion followed by South Africa with $974 billion. In his quick reactions, the minister for Finance and Economic Affairs told The Citizen yesterday that the projections were true, noting that the economic figures in Tanzania would be much better than projected by the bank. "In fact, our projections put Tanzania at a mid income economy between 2010 and 2025. Currently, Tanzania is the fifth fastest growing economy in the region. There is no way we are going to take all those years to 2030 to achieve what the bank projects. We are going to achieve it before that time," said Mr Mkulo. Asked how the government was going to ensure that the plans are implemented effectively, Mr Mkolo said in June this year the government baled the five years economic plan, which puts priorities on what should be done to spur the economic growth. "And the plan is only at its first phase of the 15-year economic plan. We would continue to ensure that we capitalise on the economic gains to make the economy even stronger... what the bank says about Tanzania's growth is true but tell them that our data is much better than what they project," the minister said. Commenting on the revelations, the shadow minister for Finance and Economic Affairs, Mr Zitto Kabwe, said it was possible for Tanzania to beat Kenya economically if the country focuses on three sectors, which are agriculture, mining and energy. "Agriculture in Tanzania forms 26 per cent of the whole economy while almost 70 per cent of the population depends on it for a living. This makes agriculture a crucial sector for poverty reduction," he said. However, Mr Zitto, who is the Kigoma North MP (Chadema), said that for agriculture to act as a basis for a robust economic growth in the country, it must grow at 6 per cent annually for the economic growth of 8 per cent. He noted that if economic growth is to be at 10 per cent, the country must ensure that agriculture grows at the rate of 8 per cent. "All these are achievable. It requires a strong leadership and commitment. Investment into the rural economy in rural energy, rural water supply, rural roads and rural social services like education and health would spur growth and integrate the rural economy with the rest of the economy," stressed the shadow Finance minister. But a leading local entrepreneur, Mr Ali Mufuruki of Infotech group, warned that double digit economic growth is not going to happen simply because people wish it. "We need to work hard, very hard and most importantly, we would require a very strong leadership," he said when responding to Mr Zitto's comments online. He noted that implementation of Kenya's Vision 2030, which was already underway, shows that the country might exceed their own very ambitious expectations. "If you go to Kenya today and see the amounts and quality of works being rolled out be it in IT (information technology) infrastructure, roads, ports, airports, industrial parks, tourism infrastructure, shopping malls, horticulture, large scale farming, commodities and securities markets, human resource, etc, you will understand that theirs is not just a story or rhetoric as is commonly the case with us. They will attain the 10 per cent GDP growth long before we up ours to 7seven," he stated adding: "We need to drastically up our act as a nation and we are looking up to leaders like Mr Zitto to take us to that promised land of Tanzania." The online comments also attracted the immediate former East Africa Community secretary general, Mr Juma Mwapachu, who noted that attaining the Standard Chartered bank's projections need committed leadership. He said that Tanzania needed a ‘mindset' that can embrace the Vision 2025 and implement it. Source: The Citizen. Mtazamo: Mwenye wivu na ajinyonge but huo ndio ukweli na economic figures zipo. Kwa kuongezea tu GDP per capital income according to World Bank/IMF inshallah tutakuwa tumeshawapita Kenya by 2015 (Hivyo pia hata GDP ya nchi huenda tukawapiku Kenya by 2015). Tunakupongeza mheshimiwa rais na tunakuombea kila la kheri kanyaga twende na gari letu. Vile tunakuomba mheshimiwa mkuu wa kaya utatue tatizo la umeme, ajira kwa vijana na ufisadi ili tupate kupiga kasi kuwa nchi ya pato la kati. Vile vile suala la EAC hatulitaki kwa sasa kwani litaharibu kila mipango iliyowekwa na serikali na kuturudisha tulikotoka mwaka 1977 (ilipovunjika EAC kwa mara ya kwanza). Tuwe kama Britain tunaungana na wenzetu kwa vitu vyenye manufaa na sie vyengine tunawaachia wenyewe.