Global plan 2007: Humanitarian aid for refugees in the United Republic of Tanzania


Tanzania has hosted refugees from the Great Lakes Region of Central Africa (GLR) and further afield for over 30 years. This Global Plan concerns the 290,000(1) refugees who are living in 11 camps in the north-west regions of Kigoma and Kagera, managed by UNHCR under the authority of Tanzania's Ministry of Home Affairs. The refugee population is very dependent on humanitarian aid for survival, as refugee self-sufficiency is not officially permitted by Tanzania's 1998 Refugees Act. In addition to the registered refugees, the Government of Tanzania estimates that there are an additional half a million living outside the camps.

In 2005, Burundi ended its protracted transition phase, with the successful democratic election of a President. The country has remained relatively stable since then and in September 2006, the last rebel faction, the FNL, signed a ceasefire. Worrying political developments were reported, however, in August 2006, but overall the situation on the ground has been satisfactory enough for UNHCR to promote repatriation. The situation in DRC may evolve after the second round of the elections in late October. UNHCR has been facilitating repatriation to DRC for the past year, mainly to South Kivu from where the great majority of the refugees originate. With the shift in the position of the Government of Tanzania from tolerating local integration towards encouraging repatriation, the latter has become the main solution for refugees in Tanzania. The process of Linking Relief, Rehabilitation and Development (LRRD) is relevant to this strategy in terms of improving the conditions for resettlement in the refugees' countries of origin in order to encourage and facilitate their return. Taking into account the numbers who are expected to repatriate by the end of 2006, there will probably be at least 290,000 registered refugees living in camps in Tanzania at the beginning of 2007. It is, moreover, likely that repatriation will increase during 2007.

The European Commission, through its Directorate-General for Humanitarian Aid (DG ECHO), aims to continue providing humanitarian aid to approximately 290,000 refugees in north-west Tanzania in 2007. The expected results are that their essential needs will be met and repatriation, as the main durable solution, will be strongly supported through the following Specific Objectives:

- To provide integrated humanitarian assistance to refugees, including water, sanitation, health, nutrition, shelter, protection and transport;

- To support facilitated repatriation of refugees to the first transit centre in their country of origin;

- To maintain a technical assistance capacity in the field, to assess needs, appraise project proposals, and to co-ordinate and monitor the implementation of operations.

This Global Plan proposes an amount of EUR 7,000,000 for 2007. This does not include the provision for food aid, estimated at EUR 5,000,000. The total Global Plan amount will be EUR 16,550,000 also including a separate humanitarian aid decision of EUR 4,550,000 from the EDF B-envelope. Potential partners are UNHCR, UNICEF, and Spanish Red Cross (SRC).


(1) Of whom 57% are Burundian, 42% Congolese and 1% of mixed origin.