August 9, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania – Philanthropists and friends Bill Gates and Graca Machel met up in Tanzania, where Machel opened the second Women Advancing Africa (WAA) conference, on Wednesday. The event brought together over 250 women leaders to discuss the critical role women play in shaping Africa's future. Gates was in Tanzania to learn more about the country’s development priorities. He and Machel, widow of former South African President Nelson Mandela, talked about their shared vision for Africa's development. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation partners with the Graca Machel Trust to advance issues of food security, nutrition and maternal newborn childbirth. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 9, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania – Philanthropists and friends Bill Gates and Graca Machel met up in Tanzania, where Machel opened the second Women Advancing Africa (WAA) conference, on Wednesday. The event brought together over 250 women leaders to discuss the critical role women play in shaping Africa's future. Gates was in Tanzania to learn more about the country’s development priorities. He and Machel, widow of former South African President Nelson Mandela, talked about their shared vision for Africa's development. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation partners with the Graca Machel Trust to advance issues of food security, nutrition and maternal newborn childbirth. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist Bill Gates toured a new fertilizer terminal in the port of Dar es Salaam, run by Yara International, an agriculture products company. Gates was accompanied by managing director Alexandre Macedo. ''If you care about the poorest, you care about agriculture,'' Gates said. According to the World Bank, agriculture is the primary economic activity for 80 percent of Tanzania's population. Gates visited the country's largest private fertilizer manufacturer to learn how small-holder farmers can get access to better inputs to improve their productivity. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist Bill Gates toured a new fertilizer terminal in the port of Dar es Salaam, run by Yara International, an agriculture products company. Gates was accompanied by managing director Alexandre Macedo. ''If you care about the poorest, you care about agriculture,'' Gates said. According to the World Bank, agriculture is the primary economic activity for 80 percent of Tanzania's population. Gates visited the country's largest private fertilizer manufacturer to learn how small-holder farmers can get access to better inputs to improve their productivity. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist Bill Gates toured a new fertilizer terminal in the port of Dar es Salaam, run by Yara International, an agriculture products company. Gates was accompanied by managing director Alexandre Macedo. ''If you care about the poorest, you care about agriculture,'' Gates said. According to the World Bank, agriculture is the primary economic activity for 80 percent of Tanzania's population. Gates visited the country's largest private fertilizer manufacturer to learn how small-holder farmers can get access to better inputs to improve their productivity. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist Bill Gates toured a new fertilizer terminal in the port of Dar es Salaam, run by Yara International, an agriculture products company. Gates was accompanied by managing director Alexandre Macedo. ''If you care about the poorest, you care about agriculture,'' Gates said. According to the World Bank, agriculture is the primary economic activity for 80 percent of Tanzania's population. Gates visited the country's largest private fertilizer manufacturer to learn how small-holder farmers can get access to better inputs to improve their productivity. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar Es Salaam, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Bill Gates, American business magnate and philanthropist, poses with president John Magufuli at the Presidental State House. Gates applauds president Magufuli's commitment to poverty reduction in Tanzania and pledges his foundation's continued support. Tanzania is one of 45 African countries in which the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation plans to invest billion by 2021. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar Es Salaam, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Bill Gates, American business magnate and philanthropist, poses with president John Magufuli at the Presidental State House. Gates applauds president Magufuli's commitment to poverty reduction in Tanzania and pledges his foundation's continued support. Tanzania is one of 45 African countries in which the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation plans to invest billion by 2021. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar Es Salaam, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Bill Gates, American business magnate and philanthropist, addresses reporters after meeting with president John Magufuli (center - foreground) at the Presidental State House. Gates applaud president Magufuli's commitment to poverty reduction in Tanzania and pledges his foundation's continued support. Tanzania is one of 45 African countries in which the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation plans to invest billion by 2021. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar Es Salaam, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Bill Gates, American business magnate and philanthropist, addresses reporters after meeting with president John Magufuli (center - foreground) at the Presidental State House. Gates applaud president Magufuli's commitment to poverty reduction in Tanzania and pledges his foundation's continued support. Tanzania is one of 45 African countries in which the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation plans to invest billion by 2021. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 2017 - Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania - Bill Gates, American business magnate and philanthropist, responds to a question during an interview. Visiting Tanzania Gates discussed his vision for Africa's development and announced a 5 million investment that will digitize Tanzania's health information systems to improve health data in the country. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 2017 - Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania - Bill Gates, American business magnate and philanthropist, responds to a question during an interview. Visiting Tanzania Gates discussed his vision for Africa's development and announced a 5 million investment that will digitize Tanzania's health information systems to improve health data in the country. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar Es Salaam, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Workers sort bags of fertilizer at the Yara Tanzania fertilizer terminal. It is the country's largest private sector fertilizer manufacturer. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar Es Salaam, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Workers sort bags of fertilizer at the Yara Tanzania fertilizer terminal. It is the country's largest private sector fertilizer manufacturer. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist BILL GATES announced a 5 million investment to help digitize Tanzania's health information systems and improve health data in the country. Gates congratulated members of the government of Tanzania on leading a drive to incorporate digital health and data into their policy framework. DR MPOKI, ULISUBISYA, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health of Tanzania, left, uses his hands to tell a story to BILL GATES as Hon. GEORGE BONIFACE SIMBACHAWENE, Minister of State in the President’s Office, responsible for Regional Administration, Local Government, Civil Service and Good Governance at the Ministry of Health, listens. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist BILL GATES announced a 5 million investment to help digitize Tanzania's health information systems and improve health data in the country. Gates congratulated members of the government of Tanzania on leading a drive to incorporate digital health and data into their policy framework. DR MPOKI, ULISUBISYA, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health of Tanzania, left, uses his hands to tell a story to BILL GATES as Hon. GEORGE BONIFACE SIMBACHAWENE, Minister of State in the President’s Office, responsible for Regional Administration, Local Government, Civil Service and Good Governance at the Ministry of Health, listens. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist BILL GATES announced a 5 million investment to help digitize Tanzania's health information systems and improve health data in the country. Gates congratulated members of the government of Tanzania on leading a drive to incorporate digital health and data into their policy framework. DR MPOKI, ULISUBISYA, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health of Tanzania, left, uses his hands to tell a story to BILL GATES as Hon. GEORGE BONIFACE SIMBACHAWENE, Minister of State in the President’s Office, responsible for Regional Administration, Local Government, Civil Service and Good Governance at the Ministry of Health, listens. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist BILL GATES announced a 5 million investment to help digitize Tanzania's health information systems and improve health data in the country. Gates congratulated members of the government of Tanzania on leading a drive to incorporate digital health and data into their policy framework. DR MPOKI, ULISUBISYA, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health of Tanzania, left, uses his hands to tell a story to BILL GATES as Hon. GEORGE BONIFACE SIMBACHAWENE, Minister of State in the President’s Office, responsible for Regional Administration, Local Government, Civil Service and Good Governance at the Ministry of Health, listens. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 2017 - Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania - Bill Gates, American business magnate and philanthropist, responds to a question during an interview. Visiting Tanzania Gates discussed his vision for Africa's development and announced a 5 million investment that will digitize Tanzania's health information systems to improve health data in the country. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 2017 - Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania - Bill Gates, American business magnate and philanthropist, responds to a question during an interview. Visiting Tanzania Gates discussed his vision for Africa's development and announced a 5 million investment that will digitize Tanzania's health information systems to improve health data in the country. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Bill Gates, American philanthropist, responds to a question during an interview. Visiting Tanzania, Gates discussed his vision for Africa's development and announced a 5 million investment that will digitize Tanzania's health information systems to improve health data in the country one of a number of grants his foundation will make in Tanzania. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Bill Gates, American philanthropist, responds to a question during an interview. Visiting Tanzania, Gates discussed his vision for Africa's development and announced a 5 million investment that will digitize Tanzania's health information systems to improve health data in the country one of a number of grants his foundation will make in Tanzania. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist Bill Gates toured a new fertilizer terminal in the port of Dar es Salaam, run by Yara International, an agriculture products company. Gates was accompanied by managing director Alexandre Macedo. ''If you care about the poorest, you care about agriculture,'' Gates said. According to the World Bank, agriculture is the primary economic activity for 80 percent of Tanzania's population. Gates visited the country's largest private fertilizer manufacturer to learn how small-holder farmers can get access to better inputs to improve their productivity. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist Bill Gates toured a new fertilizer terminal in the port of Dar es Salaam, run by Yara International, an agriculture products company. Gates was accompanied by managing director Alexandre Macedo. ''If you care about the poorest, you care about agriculture,'' Gates said. According to the World Bank, agriculture is the primary economic activity for 80 percent of Tanzania's population. Gates visited the country's largest private fertilizer manufacturer to learn how small-holder farmers can get access to better inputs to improve their productivity. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist Bill Gates toured a new fertilizer terminal in the port of Dar es Salaam, run by Yara International, an agriculture products company. Gates was accompanied by managing director Alexandre Macedo. ''If you care about the poorest, you care about agriculture,'' Gates said. According to the World Bank, agriculture is the primary economic activity for 80 percent of Tanzania's population. Gates visited the country's largest private fertilizer manufacturer to learn how small-holder farmers can get access to better inputs to improve their productivity. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist Bill Gates toured a new fertilizer terminal in the port of Dar es Salaam, run by Yara International, an agriculture products company. Gates was accompanied by managing director Alexandre Macedo. ''If you care about the poorest, you care about agriculture,'' Gates said. According to the World Bank, agriculture is the primary economic activity for 80 percent of Tanzania's population. Gates visited the country's largest private fertilizer manufacturer to learn how small-holder farmers can get access to better inputs to improve their productivity. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist Bill Gates announced a 5 million investment to help digitize Tanzania's health information systems and improve health data in the country. Gates congratulated members of the government of Tanzania on leading a drive to incorporate digital health and data into their policy framework. Pictured: Dr. Ummy Mwalimu, Minister of Health (left), and the honorable George Simbachawene, Minister of President's Office, giving Gates a document denoting the initiative’s launch. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)
August 10, 2017 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania - Philanthropist Bill Gates announced a 5 million investment to help digitize Tanzania's health information systems and improve health data in the country. Gates congratulated members of the government of Tanzania on leading a drive to incorporate digital health and data into their policy framework. Pictured: Dr. Ummy Mwalimu, Minister of Health (left), and the honorable George Simbachawene, Minister of President's Office, giving Gates a document denoting the initiative’s launch. (Credit Image: © Ric Francis via ZUMA Wire)

JOHANNESBURG - Bill Gates, Co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, visited Tanzania in the beginning of August this year to learn more about the country’s development priorities, including the use of data and technology to improve health systems and boost financial inclusion.

The foundation believes that the effective use of data is a fundamental building block in creating robust health systems. Bill is meeting with the foundation’s key partners in Tanzania, including government officials, health care workers and development executives, to understand how the country is increasing the use of data in its health sector.

A key focus of this visit is to see, first-hand, the progress Tanzania has made towards achieving the health sector's data vision, including how innovative practices are delivering on this strategy. During the visit, Bill will launch a new partnership with the Government of Tanzania which will complement the Better Immunization Data Initiative by accelerating the use of existing data and developing strong data policy frameworks.

Bill will also meet with public and private sector stakeholders to discuss opportunities to expand the reach of digital payments. About half of Tanzania’s population have adopted mobile money technology. These meetings will help identify opportunities for expanding and deepening the use of digital payments in the country.

During the visit, Bill will toured a fertilizer factory to understand local initiatives aimed at improving the supply and distribution of fertilizer to smallholder farmers. Better access to quality fertilizer and other inputs will help farmers boost staple crop and livestock productivity. 

This in turn will enable farmers to both feed their families and generate higher incomes. Boosting agricultural production can ensure that healthy, nutritious food is available to all. The foundation is working with a number of partners in Tanzania and elsewhere, including GAIN, UNICEF and Johns Hopkins University, to tackle issues around undernutrition in the country.

The foundation works with partners in more than 45 African countries to reduce poverty and improve health. Some of the major areas of investment include agriculture, child health and nutrition, family planning and financial services for the poor. Between 2001 and 2016, the foundation invested more than $9bn in Africa. The foundation plans to invest an additional $5bn by 2021.

- BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE