Mr Kikwete said this recently in Dar es Salaam in bidding farewell to the outgoing South African Ambassador to Tanzania, Mr Thanduyise Henry Chiliza, who has completed his term of service in the country.
Moreover, the president told Mr Chiliza that apart from South Africa, there are several countries in the world now that are very close to Tanzania.
“We have been close partners in many ways, including in regional and international relations. Our relationship has never been so close in regard to the history.
We are ever grateful for your contribution in strengthening our relations, Mr Chiliza,” said Mr Kikwete. President Kikwete also commended the role of South Africa in ensuring stability in the southern African region, saying he appreciated the contribution and leadership SA has made towards that direction.