Ministry urged to invest in oil, gas curricula

THE government expects to harvest over 4tril/-every year in terms of taxes and returns in natural gas sector, the Controller and Auditor General (CAG),Prof Mussa Assad, has disclosed.

Such amount, he said, was equivalent to 2-3 percent of Gross Domestic Products (GDP), as was confirmed in the second oil and gas conference held in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania in 2013.

A Study by Oxford Policy Management estimated that government revenues through taxes and returns to the planned national gas company will yield a revenue potential of 1-2 billion US dollars a year, he said in his performance audit report on producing graduates in oil and natural gas industry.

The CAG noted in the report presented before the National Assembly here on Thursday that natural gas has become an increasingly important energy source around the world, and its importance is expected to increase in the coming decades.

However, Prof Assad expressed his concern in the report on the Ministry of Education of having ineffective systems for managing the activities aimed at the production of needed skills in the Oil and Gas Industry. Likewise, he states, the learning institutions have inadequate capacity to produce skills needed in the oil and natural gas industry.

As a result, a limited number of Tanzanians will benefit from available opportunities emanating from the industry activities; regardless of existing policies that call for the education system to be responsive to the ever changing needs of people, government, industry, market and surrounding environment, he said.

The CAG has identified a number of shortfalls on the issue, including ineffective system for managing activities for producing skills needed in oil and gas, limited funds provided to universities and colleges and insufficient training facilities to assist practical training.

Other shortcomings are inadequate monitoring and evaluation of activities for producing needed skills, existing curricula in universities and colleges in Tanzania that did not meet the demand of the industry and inadequate number of trainers with competency in oil and natural gas issues.

In order to address the situation,the CAG has come up in his report with a number of recommendations, notably, preparation of a comprehensive plan that governs the activities pertaining to skills enhancement.

The plan produced should be effectively communicated and understood by the responsible stakeholders such as learning institutions, regulators and other sectoral ministries who have roles in skills development in oil and natural gas sector, he said.

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