Dar es Salaam: The Indian community here came in for praise from Prime Minister Manmohan Singh who said they have earned a reputation for entrepreneurial spirit,
perseverance and hard work making remarkable contributions to the development of Tanzania.
On a three-day visit to give a fresh impetus to bilateral ties, Singh met the Indian community here last night and said they symbolized the contemporary face of
civilisational and historical linkages with Tanzania and with East Africa as a whole.
Tanzanians of Indian origin and Indian expatriates constitute the largest migrant group in this African country. The total number of persons of Indian origin in Tanzania is over 40,000.
Indian expatriates, who first came as teachers and experts, and who now come as professionals and skilled craftsmen, have found Tanzania a rich and welcoming society, with many commonalities with India, he noted.
Dr Singh will meet Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete on a range of regional, international and bilateral matters.
The Prime Minister said India has had historical links with erstwhile Tanganyika and Zanzibar.
These have now been transformed into a strong and abiding relationship with the United Republic of Tanzania, he said, adding "Tanzania for us is the gateway to eastern Africa".
A number of Tanzanian MPs of Indian-origin, many of whom were elected in the October, 2010 general elections, were also present at the function.
"Their participation in the political institutions of this country is a reflection of the trust and confidence they enjoy among the electorate," he said, congratulating them on their achievements.
Dr Singh said his government was deeply committed to the welfare and prosperity of the Indian community in this country and that several initiatives had been taken in this regard.