Tanzania has been spared the internal strife that has blighted many African states.
Though it remains one of the poorest countries in the world, with many of its people living below the World Bank poverty line, it has had some success in wooing donors and investors. Unlike many African countries, whose potential wealth contrasted with their actual poverty, Tanzania had few exportable minerals and a primitive agricultural system, the BBC reports.
Tourism is an important revenue earner; Tanzania's attractions include Africa's highest mountain, Kilimanjaro, and wildlife-rich national parks such as the Serengeti. Tanzania has become a target for poachers, and conservationists have warned that the current rate at which elephants are being killed for their ivory the entire population could die out by the end of the decade.
Tanzania has enjoyed political stability. Multi-party politics was introduced in 1992. It hosts thousands of refugees from conflict in the neighbouring Great Lakes region, the BBC reports.