DAR-ES-SALAAM, The Republic of Korea (ROK) will support Tanzania in the development of renewable energy to enhance thecountry's industrialisation drive as it focuses on strengthening co-operation in the field of clean energy, says the East Asian nation's ambassador in Tanzania, Song Geum-young.

The ROK is looking forward to support Tanzania exploit its great potential for production of renewable energy so as to speed up the transformation of the nation to a semi-industrialised economy, he said at the 2017 Korea-Tanzania Energy Co-operation Forum here.

We are committed to strengthen our co-operation in renewable energy by lending our experience and expertise to support Tanzania's efforts to become a middle-income country by 2025, added Song.

He said Tanzania was at the top of a list of priority countries for partnership with the ROK because of strong bilateral relations and he was looking forward to strengthening the ties for mutual benefit.

Tanzania is leading other African countries in benefitting from Korea's Economic Development Co-operation Fund (EDCF) established in 1987 to channel Korea's support to developing countries. By the end of 2016 the fund had supported 12 projects in infrastructure, energy, water and education with total commitment of 545.10 million US dollars.

The EDCF-supported projects in Tanzania include the Malagarasi Bridge and associated roads in Kigoma Region and the construction of the Shinyanga-Singida and Dodoma-Iringa power transmission lines. Others include water and sanitation projects in Dodoma Region, the Kilimanjaro-Arusha electricity transmission line project, and construction of MUHAS medical centre project.

Big infrastructure projects receiving EDCF support include construction of new Selandar bridge in Dar es Salaam that will involve the construction of a seven-kilometre road to connect the central business district region and Msasani area.

The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and East Africa Co-operation, Prof Adolf Mkenda, said the government appreciated the intention to support Tanzania on renewable energy. The government was pleased with the strong relations with Korea where Tanzania has so far benefited from the support on various areas including infrastructure, health and ICT.