The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a USD 29.8 Million loan to Tanzania to help the country mobilize domestic resources and unlock the potential of its natural gas resources through leveraging domestic markets and local content initiatives.
The approval follows a workshop held in Dar Es Salaam on 20 March 2017, co-organized by the National Economic Empowerment Council (NEEC) of Tanzania and the African Natural Resources Center of the AfDB, under the theme “Unlocking the potential of gas resources In Tanzania, leveraging domestic markets and local content requirements”.
The one-day workshop held in Dar Es Salaam focused on local content and gas utilization at national and regional levels and was attended by representatives from public and private sector, both national and international.
The Executive Secretary of the NEEC, Beng’I Issa, addressed the workshop, saying that the Council “looks forward to a fruitful collaboration between public and private sector to achieve the intended goal of empowering Tanzanians”.
The approved project will help Tanzania capture the best value from their natural gas resources through a sound regulatory framework to manage natural gas reserves and to attract investment, as well as support for government negotiations teams to ensure the country gets the best deals and local content policies formulation to create jobs in the gas sector.
The project will also contribute to designing strategies for domestication of natural gas, so that the gas resources can be utilized nationally and regionally to develop the energy and industry sectors.
While the large gas offshore discoveries can be a game changer for the country, doubling GDP, developing access to energy at national and regional levels and facilitating industrial development, it also represents significant challenges, the AfDB explains.
“The AfDB is stepping up its support to the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania to develop the gas sector that is potentially transformative for the country,” AfDB’s Country Manager for Tanzania (OIC), Chidozie Emenuga, said.
Tanzania’s estimated natural gas reserves currently (2016) stand at 57 trillion cubic feet (TCF).
As included in Tanzania’s Natural Gas Policy from 2013, the country aims at achieving a competitive natural gas industry contributing significantly to broad based growth and socio-economic transformation of Tanzania.