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Last Updated: April 2016


Map of Tanzania
Map of Tanzania
  • Tanzania is a small natural gas producer, but the country is planning to become an exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the future. There have been several natural gas discoveries made in offshore southern Tanzania since 2010 large enough to support an LNG plant.
  • Progress on the Tanzania LNG project had been delayed because of legal and regulatory uncertainty, obstacles in acquiring the land to build the plant, and low prices for LNG. However, Tanzania recently made significant progress by passing new oil and gas legislation and finalizing deals to acquire land. While Tanzania is moving closer to becoming an LNG exporter, the project is still in the beginning stage and none of the international companies involved have made a final investment decision.

Petroleum and other liquids

  • Tanzania does not produce crude oil, and the country has not had a recent commercial oil discovery. Tanzania typically consumes around 35,000 barrels per day of refined oil products, all of which is imported.

Natural gas

  • Tanzania produced 19 billion cubic feet (Bcf) of natural gas in 2014, almost 30% lower than five years prior, according to Cedigaz data. Tanzania consumes all of its natural gas production locally.
  • Natural gas output increased in mid-2015 after production started at the Mnazi Bay Concession, located in southeast Tanzania in the Rovuma Basin. Production started shortly after a 330 mile-long natural gas pipeline was completed, with a capacity of 0.8 Bcf per day, transporting gas from Mnazi Bay to Tanzania's capital city, Dar es Salaam.
  • Tanzania has the potential to become a LNG exporter in the future. There have been several natural gas discoveries made in offshore southern Tanzania since 2010. The BG Group (being acquired by Royal Dutch Shell), in partnership with Ophir Energy and Pavilion Energy, have found 16 to 17 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of gross recoverable gas resources. Statoil, in partnership with ExxonMobil, has located 22 Tcf of natural gas in place.
  • Despite vast discoveries, the natural gas projects offshore Tanzania, which includes developing the resources and building a LNG plant to export the gas, have not yet been sanctioned by any of the companies. In April 2014, the international companies agreed to jointly build an LNG plant in partnership with the Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC), Tanzania's national oil company.
  • TPDC recently finalized a deal to acquire the title deed for the land in the southern coastal city of Lindi to build the gas processing and LNG plant, achieving a critical milestone. Tanzania's parliament also passed three legislative acts in July 2015 to clear the regulatory confusion around the country's oil and gas sector, which included the Petroleum Act (2015), the Oil and Gas Revenues Management Act (2015), and the Tanzania Extractive Industries (Transparency and Accountability) Act (2015).
  • The Tanzania LNG project is currently in the pre-Front End Engineering Design (FEED) stage, with the BG Group as the project's current lead developer. The project is expected to enter the FEED stage by late 2016 or sometime in 2017.


  • Tanzania also produces small volumes of coal. The country produced 77,000 short tons of coal in 2013, all of which was consumed locally.


  • According to the International Energy Agency's latest 2013 data, 71% of Tanzania's population living in urban areas has access to electricity; while a mere 4% of the rural population has access to electricity. Electricity net generation in Tanzania was 5.3 billion kilowatthours in 2013, of which almost 68% was from fossil-fuel sources, 32% was from hydropower, and a small amount from modern biomass and solar. Tanzania's rural population relies on traditional biomass and waste (typically consisting of wood, charcoal, manure, and crop residues) for household heating and cooking.