EDITORIAL: New gas finds good news for Tanzania

Friday October 4 2019

Hurray, Tanzania, for the continuing oil-and-gas exploration which recently unearthed – so to speak – a high potential of commercial-grade natural gas in four new fields onshore as per preliminary findings.

According to the Energy minister, Dr Medard Kalemani, the four exploration fields in Western Songo Songo, North Mnazi Bay, Ruvu and Ntori do have the potential for at least 5.2 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of natural gas.

Addressing the Tanzania Oil-and-Gas Congress (2019) in Dar es Salaam on Wednesday, the minister called upon existing and prospective investors to smartly move in and grab the new opportunities created by the preliminary findings.

Investment openings are in further exploration and production – i.e. drilling/extracting reserves – as well as in downstream operations following the production phase to the point of sale.

In the oil-and-gas industry, these include refining and distributing related products and byproducts down to the retail level – not forgetting liquefied natural gas plants.

As noted in The Citizen yesterday, confirmation of the 5.2tcf of natural gas deposits would bring to 62.7tcf the country’s total ‘wealth’ in natural gas, including helium, used in nuclear reactors, airships, balloons, refrigeration, medicine, scientific/cryogenic research...

Advertisement

Securing functional investors in the (oil and) natural gas subsectors would, therefore, be a great leap forward in the national development vision which envisages a semi-industrialised, middle-income economy by Year-2025. Indeed, the Oil-and-Gas Congress (2019) was the right venue for drumming up investors in the subsector.

This is if only because the event brought together some 500 participants from across the oil-and-gas value chain to focus on the latest project updates and developments in the industry – making it a viable platform for promoting government and industry collaboration in the pivotal public/private partnership mode.

So, we urge the President Magufuli government to expedite reviewing the investment policy and regulatory frameworks and catch investors early in this day and age of stiff competition for investments.