Petrostate Blog for the weeks 27.11 to 10.12. 2017

In its World Energy Outlook 2017, IEA focuses on the advantages of natural gas for power generation. The role of natural gas in the future is inextricably linked to its ability to help address environmental problems. With concerns about air quality and climate change looming large, natural gas offers many potential benefits if it displaces more polluting fuels. This is especially true given limits to how quickly renewable energy options can be scaled up and that cost-effective zero-carbon option can be harder to find in some parts of the energy system. The flexibility that natural gas brings to an energy system can also make it a good fit for the rise of variable renewables such as wind and solar PV. Continue reading Petrostate Blog for the weeks 27.11 to 10.12. 2017

Petrostate Blog

A tremor in the worlds petro markets was caused recently by Norway’s sovereign fund proposing to sell off some USD 35 billion of its oil and natural gas stocks.  It caused a sharp but temporary drop in the worlds petro-stocks until the Norwegian Central Bank, that manages the fund, explained that they had merely made a proposal to the Ministry of Finance.  The Ministry will now consider the proposal and perhaps take it to the national assembly. A final decision is not expected before far into 2018.

Although the environment lobby was jubilant, the Central Bank denied that the shedding of oil stocks took place because the bank saw a future decline in the global petro industry. The Deputy Governor argued that the move was meant to diversify the economy and guard against drops in petroleum prices. Norway derives a hefty 20% of its GDP from oil and gas.

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Policy making in the Tanzanian petro state: Building a statistical basis

This paper deals with needs and availability of data, statistics and information in Tanzania. It relates to a five-year (2014–19) research programme on prospects and challenges for the petroleum sector.

The main objectives are

  • to present a brief analysis based on data which is accessible at present and
  • to sketch a structure for the Tanzania Petro Data Hub

To read the paper click here.

Understanding the lay of the land: An institutional analysis of petro-governance in Tanzania

Tanzania has recently discovered large petroleum and natural gas reserves, boosting its natural resource stocks and potential future revenue flows. Whether the country’s petroleum resources will translate into economic development will be determined by the institutions that the government puts into place to govern the petroleum sector, to include the legal institutions. This study reviews the most important provisions of the new legislative framework that the government has recently adopted to govern this newfound wealth. We examine the institutions and actors created by the legislation as well as the opportunities and challenges that may emerge in its future implementation. Specifically, we analyse the petro-sector institutions that the legislation creates and the types of authorities granted to them; the institutional constraints placed on authorities; the interaction between institutions; potential institutional overlaps, conflicts and gaps; and transparency and accountability mechanisms. Read the paper here

Governance challenges in Tanzania’s natural gas sector: unregulated lobbyism and uncoordinated policy

Fjeldstad, Odd-Helge and Johnsøn, Jesper. 2017. Governance challenges in Tanzania’s natural gas sector: unregulated lobbyism and uncoordinated policy. Chapter 3 (pp. 44-57) in Aled Williams and Philippe le Billon (eds.) Corruption, natural resources and development: from resource curse to political ecology. Edward Elgar Publishing.


Organised and delivered by REPOA and Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) from 03 to 07 July 2017 at REPOA, Dar es Salaam. The training was a hands-on “learning from practice” workshop that focused on building the understanding of the links between, and the dynamics of, extractives governance and the implementation of the Second Five-Year Development Plan (FYDP II). The training aimed to improve participants’ knowledge of not only policy options and tools to achieving the objectives of the plan, but of also the inherent challenges…read more here

Progress in data availability for the petro programme

An increasing amount of data for policymaking and public engagement in Tanzania are being made available in the Tanzania Petro Hub ( ). Below are the latest ones:

The working paper at (, entitled “Policy Making in the Tanzanian Petro State: Building a Statistical Basis” has taken a long time in construction since the original concept for the Petro Data Hub comprises several priorities that will have to be balanced against each other. First, it should serve many different interests like data demands of researchers within the petrostate programme but additionally also the needs of the wider research community, civil society and other individuals in Tanzania.  Second, since the petro-programme covers both the petroleum (gas) sector itself but importantly also its social and economic effects on Tanzania, it could potentially cover nearly all social, economic (and other) statistics and thus overlap completely the data disseminated by NBS and all other statistics producing institutions in the country. The line taken has been to cover wide areas of statistical information but restrict the data presented to those that may be said to cover areas of interest for the research programme.

In many areas, the present availability of relevant data is poor.  This was shown in the first part of the paper where we examined and presented accessible data including the resource base and its exploitation spatially and geologically; then investments, operators and production, including a brief historical overview. The economic contribution of the gas resource in terms of GDP, investment, external trade and balance of payments, employment and fiscal contribution as well as social contribution was also covered.

The Data Hub is structured as a number of Groups, presently in all 22 (some more may be necessary in future). The actual composition of groups can be seen in Each group will contain one or more datasets and accompanying metadata.

The Data Hub will not only comprise numerical data but also link to a number of important legal and policy documents as well as governance and institutions. In addition, aspects of petroleum geology and resources including territory issues are included.  Quantitative data will include exploration and investment in the petroleum industry, information on various types of capital goods (e.g. petroleum pipelines) for the industry. Current statistics on petroleum (gas) production and sales and foreign trade will be included, as well as activities in other and petroleum related industry like energy, production, investment and consumption. Overall effects of the petro industries will be gauged in a section on national accounts, including financial and budget issues as well as quantitative analysis and models for the petroleum industry. Finally, the wider issues like social developments and poverty as well as environment information and petro related politics in Tanzania, like opinion polls on petroleum issues will be included.  A section on international comparative statistics will have links to international databases for comparison purposes.

It is hoped that a useable database can be presented at the ARW 2017 in Dar es Salaam. The Data Hub will continue to be “work in progress” as new datasets will be added to it as they become available. The Data Hub will have to be based completely on secondary statistics, as the data component of the petro programme does not have means to collect primary data.

Strategic Positioning of a NOC in the context of the new regulatory and the operating environment

On September 28, Dr. Donald Mmari (REPOA) and Prof. Sufian Bukurura (Law Reform Commission of Tanzania) presented their work on the strategic positioning of a NOC in the context of the new regulatory and the operating environment.

There was wide media coverage of Dr. Donald Mmari and Professor Sufian Bukurura’s presentation. Prof. Bukurura here interviewed by journalists. Photo: Joyce Bayona


The presentation is available here: Strategic positioning of a NOC in the context of the new regulatory and the operating environment