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State visit from Tanzania: His Majesty The King´s speech

Speech given by His Majesty King Harald during the gala dinner at Oslo Royal Palace in honour of the state visit from the United Republic of Tanzania 13 February 2024.

President Samia Suluhu Hassan,
Distinguished guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

Karibu, Madam President! 

It is a great pleasure for the Queen and I to welcome you to Norway.

We have fond memories of our visit to Tanzania in 1981, which was our first visit to Africa. We had the honour of meeting then President Nyerere, and the beauty of your country made a deep impression on us. 

From the Serengeti plain to the Swahili coast, it was a wonderful introduction to the continent. And unforgettable – in so many ways. I can assure all of you:

If you ever experience to be chased by a rhino, you will never ever forget it – just ask the Queen. But we don’t blame him: We were after all not-invited visitors on his turf.

We left Tanzania with a great appreciation of the hospitality of the Tanzanian people – and most of the animals. 

Your visit brings warmth into our cold Norwegian February. Your visit also coincides with the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between our two countries.

In the years after independence, Tanzania led the way as a champion for the independence of all African nations, and Norway was proud to stand with you. Tanzania has always been a central meeting place, where people have come together in the spirit of unity. This has forged a uniquely hospitable culture – and Kiswahili as a language now connects people across national borders.  

Tanzania and Norway seek to reach decisions in the spirit of equality between nations. Both our countries support a multilateral system where all voices are heard, a system that is essential for maintaining peaceful relations between countries. 

Madam President,

You are known for your devotion and service to your people.  

You have shown great leadership and dedication in ensuring that all voices can be heard, including the voices of women and girls.

Your work to ensure the right of girls to an education is commendable. Tanzania and Norway share a commitment to safeguarding the rights of women and girls.

The prosperity of our nations is based on our natural resources, and climate change is a key challenge for both of us. In 2023 our countries agreed to continue to deepen our cooperation on climate action.

Both countries are blessed with abundant renewable and fossil energy resources. It is critical to find sources of energy to meet the needs of a growing global population while implementing a just and sustainable green transition.

The need for clean cooking solutions is another area of critical importance, and we would like to congratulate you on the launch of the African Women Clean Cooking Support Programme this past December.

I am also pleased to see that major Norwegian companies are showing an interest in increasing cooperation with Tanzania in the area of green energy.

Madam President,

Tanzania and Norway are both fantastic tourist destinations, and the tourist industry is vital to our economies.

At this time of year, I am confident that sun-worshippers dream of Zanzibar’s beaches – whereas Norway can offer passionate skiers and snowboarders fulfilment of their dreams.

Tonight, we have gathered here in Oslo in recognition of our deep respect for each other – and with an optimistic view on what we can achieve together.   

I ask you all to join us in a toast to Her Excellency President Samia Suluhu Hassan, to the people of Tanzania and to the close and friendly relations between our two countries.



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