The supply of sugar in Tanzania is set to increase as more investors have shown interest to invest in the sector, which may lead to a drop in prices of the commodity in the country in future.

Minister for Industry, Trade and Investment Charles Mwijage and Minister for Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries Dr Charles Tizeba are set to leave for Mauritius this on a mission to attract investors into Tanzania's sugar sector.

The Permanent Secretary in the Industry, Trade and Investment Ministry, Professor Adolf Mkenda, told the Daily News over the weekend that preparations were being made for the trip. "The talks with Mauritius have already been held and they are waiting for us to go," Prof Mkenda said.

The good news from the government came at a time when Tanzanians are feeling the pinch of higher sugar prices for the past eight months. Prices of the essential commodity went up from early this year when the shortage of the product hit the market after some traders held on to big stocks of sugar in their warehouses.

The situation forced the government to embark on a nationwide search for hidden sugar, which resulted into prices by about 50 per cent in many parts of the country. Since then, prices have gone down slightly.

Mwijage told the Daily News that Tanzania had the potential to raise its sugar production to two million tonnes per year against the current 300,000 tonnes.

The minister noted that several local and foreign investors were now at different stages of setting up sugar operations, mainly in the Morogoro, Kigoma and Songwe regions, as well as in Rufiji District of Coast Region (Province).