Mtwara Region

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Mtwara Region
Mkoa wa Mtwara  (Swahili)
The Mikindani Bay.
The Mikindani Bay.
Location in Tanzania
Location in Tanzania
 • Total16,710 km2 (6,450 sq mi)
Population (2012)
 • Total1,270,854
 • Density76/km2 (200/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+3 (EAT)
Area code(s)023
WebsiteRegional website

Mtwara Region is one of Tanzania's 31 administrative regions. The regional capital is the municipality of Mtwara. According to the 2012 national census, the region had a population of 1,270,854, which was lower than the pre-census projection of 1,374,767.[1]:page 2 For 2002-2012, the region's 1.2 percent average annual population growth rate was the 26th highest in the country.[1]:page 4 It was also the fourteenth most densely populated region with 76 people per square kilometer.[1]:page 6

The boundary with Mozambique to the south is formed by the Ruvuma River. To the west, Mtwara is bordered by Ruvuma Region, to the north by Lindi Region, and to the east is the Indian Ocean.

Development of the Mtwara Region has been constrained by the lack of highway and energy infrastructures. The Dar es Salaam-Kibiti-Lindi-Mtwara road has been improved by the completion of the Mkapa Bridge over the Rufiji River. Mnazi Bay gas promises to provide reliable and adequate electricity for powering industrial and commercial activities in the region.[citation needed]

The regional commissioner of the Mtwara Region is Anatoli A. Tarimo.[2]


The Groundnut Scheme[edit]

In 1948, the British Government formulated the "Tanganyika groundnut scheme" through the Overseas Food Corporation (OFC). The purpose was to alleviate the worldwide shortage of vegetable oils; however, inadequate research and adverse environmental conditions due to poor planning resulted in the complete and disastrous failure of the scheme. In this region the exported crop was to go through the port of Mtwara which was created for the scheme and linked to the growing areas near Nachingwea by a new railway.


The region is administratively divided as five districts with Mtwara Municipal and Masasi Town having separate councils:

Districts of Mtwara Region
Map District Population (2012)
Tanzania Mtwara location map2.svg Masasi 350,689
Mtwara 336,302
Nanyumbu 150,857
Newala 205,492
Tandahimba 227,514
Total 1,270,854


Coordinates: 10°40′S 39°00′E / 10.667°S 39.000°E / -10.667; 39.000