AS oil and gas exploration in Lake Tanganyika continues, the government has begun looking for a strategic partner with whom to collaborate in the next stages of research.
This was said by Deputy Minister for Energy Stephen Byabato on Monday, while responding to a supplementary question from Kigoma Urban MP Kilumbe Ng’enda.
Mr Ng’enda wanted to know government’s plan to speed up the exploration so that Tanzanians can find out when the extraction will begin.
In response to the question, Mr Byabato stated that the next stages of research would be 3D, which is costly, and that the government has begun looking for a partner to work with.
Despite the existence of strong indicators of the presence of oil in the Lake Tanganyika blocks, he said that because the research was still in progress, the final conclusions regarding the presence of oil in the area have not yet been reached.
Mr Ng’enda’s main inquiry was about the outcomes of oil exploration in Lake Tanganyika and the start date for oil extraction.
“Lake Tanganyika’s oil exploration is divided into the North Block and the South Block. The North Block, which is 9,430 square kilometres in size, is where Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC) was able to gather, process, and interpret magnetic resonance data in 2015/2016 to identify potential locations for oil storage deposits,” Mr Byabato noted.
Additionally, he stated that the South Block, which is 7,163 square kilometres in size, is where TPDC and the Investor (Beach Petroleum Company) were able to gather, process, and interpret data about magnetic attraction to locate potential oil reserve areas.
Lake Tanganyika is the second-largest freshwater lake in the world by volume and the second deepest. The lake is divided among four countries Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Burundi, and Zambia.
Tanzania and DRC possess the majority of the lake with respective shares of 46 per cent and 40 per cent.