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Cablegate: Russian Business Presence in Tanzania: C-Ci9-01825

VZCZCXRO6548
RR RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHJO RUEHMR RUEHRN
DE RUEHDR #0663 2821009
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 091009Z OCT 09
FM AMEMBASSY DAR ES SALAAM
TO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE
INFO RUEHJB/AMEMBASSY BUJUMBURA 2983
RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 3519
RUEHLGB/AMEMBASSY KIGALI 1447
RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 1398

UNCLAS DAR ES SALAAM 000663

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PINR BBSR ECON EINV
SUBJECT: RUSSIAN BUSINESS PRESENCE IN TANZANIA: C-CI9-01825

REF: SECSTATE 88241

1. The Minister Counselor/DCM at the Russian Embassy in Dar
Es Salaam handles trade and investment matters. He is
coordinating a Trade and Investment delegation arriving in
Tanzania November 9.

2. The most high profile investment by a Russian company in
Tanzania is Petra Diamonds' October 2009 purchase of De
Beers' 75 percent stake in the Williamson (Mwadui) diamond
mine in Shinyanga region for USD 10 million (the GOT owns the
remaining 25 percent). Despite De Beers' declared losses for
the past fifteen years, Petra reported a USD 10.5 million
value of the 84,486 carats' worth of diamonds mined in the
past year, and announced plans to invest up to USD 45 million
in the mine, which is reportedly the largest deposit of
kimberlite diamond ore in the world. The Tanzania Investment
Center list of Russian investment from 2000-2008 shows nine
Russian companies involved in manufacturing, three in
transport, seven in mining and three in tourism, with total
investment value of USD 26 million. The largest Russian
investors were passenger transport provider Unique Group (USD
7.67 m), tour operator Ultra Travel Africa (USD 2.4 m), and
vehicle reconditioning garage VIP Auto Zone (USD 1.16 m).
Rexwell Mining Company discovered niobium and tantalum, used
for cell phones and shipbuilding, in Mbeya in 2006 and is
undertaking further exploration. Revenue figures were
unavailable.

3. Well-known Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich's recent
visit to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro highlights a trend toward
increased Russian tourism in Tanzania, which the GOT actively
promotes. Since 2003, Tanzania has participated in more than
ten tourism exhibits in Moscow.
ANDRE

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