By Ken Karuri
Tanzania plans to negotiate terms for developing a $30 billion liquefied natural gas project with companies between April and September, the Energy Ministry said.
The talks are aimed at reaching a so-called Host Government Agreement, the pact that governs the rights and obligations of parties with respect to the development, construction and operation of the project. Equinor, one of the companies involved, could sign the accord after the talks, according to the emailed statement.
Negotiations between the government and international oil companies, which started in 2017, have so far failed to lead to a deal. The project is meant to enable the export of gas from Tanzania.
The talks will ensure all parties involved will benefit fairly from the project, Energy Minister Medard Kalemani said at a meeting with Equinor executives in Tanzanian capital, Dodoma. Other companies involved in the project include Royal Dutch Shell and Ophir Energy.
Equinor is committed to the development of the project, Mette Halvorsen Ottoy, a senior vice president at the company said in the statement.
Tanzanian President John Magufuli said he would pursue partnerships that enable his nation to benefit more from its resources. The country has an estimated 58 trillion cu ft of natural gas reserves.