The Tanzanian government is set to become East Africa’s leading country in the exploration of oil and natural gas within the next decade, reported ESI Africa.
Tanzania’s Minister of Energy and Minerals, Sospeter Muhongo, stated that through investments in acquiring knowledge in the sector the country could achieve the goal of being the first in oil and natural gas exploitation. He added: “Since the sector is new in the country, we intend to have at least 500 trained experts in the area of oil and natural gas in 10 years’ time.”
In related news, companies interested in East Africa’s hydrocarbons have started putting their capital into countries with proven resources and decent fiscal terms, according to All Africa. Yet, investments remain low due to decline in global prices, standing at $2.5b in 2015, as opposed to $4.6b in 2012.
Governments in East Africa, including Tanzania, must offer an attractive environment by reforming their regulatory, fiscal, and licensing systems, in order to attract oil and gas investors.
Tanzania’s current regulatory environment is uncertain despite the promulgation of the Petroleum Act in 2015, which allowed increased central government involvement. This fueled investor fears of project delays relating to developing liquefied natural gas (LNG) processing plant. With 57.1tcf of natural gas reserves, Tanzania must ensure that its fiscal and regulatory structures are in place to support the government’s gas plans.