He said the country, the second largest economy in the east African region, needed adequate, affordable, and reliable energy supplies to achieve the Tanzania’s Development Vision 2025 that envisions transforming the country into a middle-income status by 2025.
“This is because energy is economy,” Majaliwa told the 51st annual meetings of the Board of Governors of the African Development Bank (AfDB) which opened in the Zambian capital Lusaka.
A statement availed to Xinhua in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam from the Prime Minister’s Office quoted Majaliwa as saying for decades, the government remained a primary financier of power projects in Tanzania.
However, he said, the projected power projects funding exceeds the existing government fiscal space.
“Therefore, private capital investment is becoming an important ingredient to bridge this financing gap. To attract private capital, the government is improving institutional set up, legal and regulatory frameworks,” said Majaliwa in the statement.
The Premier said Tanzania has abundant energy resources including, natural gas, coal, uranium, hydro, and renewable energies, adding that much of these resources were used for power generation.
The national energy balance in Tanzania was still dominated by the use of biomass in form of charcoal and firewood estimated at 85 percent, said Majaliwa.
In addition, he said, Tanzania was a net importer of petroleum products as no oil has been discovered yet.
“In the long-term, the government will continue to invest in power generation using natural gas, coal, hydro, and renewable energies such as geothermal, solar, wind and biomass,” said Majaliwa.
He said the severe and recurrent droughts in the past few years triggered devastating power crisis as electricity generation in most of the hydropower stations have progressively been declining in recent years, occasionally resulting in long hours of power black outs.
Tanzania is endowed with abundant energy resources that include the natural gas estimated at 57.25 trillion standards cubic feet, coal reserve estimated at 1.9 billion tonnes of which 25 percent is proven, hydro power generation potential of 4.7GW (Gigawatt) of which 12 percent is exploited, uranium deposits of about 200 million pounds and geothermal resource power generation potential of more than 5,000 MW.
During the four-day meeting, the AfDB Group will unveil its new agenda for the continent’s economic transformation, The New Deal on Energy for Africa 2016-2025, the Strategy for Jobs for Youth in Africa 2016-2025, and plan for Africa’s Agricultural transformation. Endit