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The University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM) students, the majority of whom are pursuing degrees in science in Oil and Gas, have recommended a move by the government to create a conducive environment for investment in the appealing sector that promises a bright future for the country’s development.

Speaking at the conference with the theme ‘The Role of Youth in the Energy Sector’ held at Nkrumah Hall in Dar es Salaam on Saturday, the students said that through the Local Content Policy, the enticing sector creates employment for Tanzanians and contributes to development as more projects are in the pipeline.

Abduel Mfangavo, The President of the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE), who is undertaking a Bachelor of Science in Petroleum Engineering, said that oil and gas is an appealing sector in the current generation as it attracts huge investment and demands a significant manpower.

“We need to have local professionals who will also participate in gas and oil extraction to earn international expertise and participate in the implementation of both local and international mega projects,” said Mfangavo.

Upendo Laizer, who is taking a Bachelor of Science in Mineral Processing and Metallurgy Engineering, said that the extraction of oil, gas, and mining, apart from promoting the country’s economy, also creates employment and enables, among other things, technology transfer among local and foreign experts.

“We are eagerly waiting to explore the opportunities available when we complete our studies,” said Joan Tito, taking a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry.

“We’re starting to see some green shoots. The promising sector is actually demanding skills in local content.”

Among other things, she has, however, urged the youth to be well skilled and have the right qualifications so that to be ready to compete within the sector.  She also said that the participation of more women and girls is crucial to driving the sector.

The conference that was jointly organized by the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP), the Association of Tanzania Oil and Gas Service Providers (ATOGS) and Total Energies was aimed at providing students with wide knowledge on opportunities available in new energy projects such as the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) project, The East African Crude Oil Pipeline project (EACOP), and other prospective projects.

Speaking earlier, the Commissioner of Petroleum and Gas, Michael Mjinja, who represented the Minister for Minerals, January Makamba, said that youths have huge potential to play an active role in the energy transition that has been necessary as a means of progressing industry, leading to breakthroughs such as the industrial revolution.

He said youths have the power in their hands to be the best-equipped generation to drive changes in the industry.

“Youth are the ultimate stockholders in the energy transition; we need to empower young people to act and influence today’s decisions around energy and climate, so they have the opportunity for the prosperous future they deserve”, he said.

However, he said that they often require complementary skills, connections, confidence, and knowledge necessary to accelerate the energy transition.

He said while recognizing the essence of the energy transition, Tanzania has abundant energy resources, which include natural gas, coal, uranium, hydro, biomass, solar, wind, geothermal, tidal, and waves.

He added that the country is geared towards having a proper energy mix that can go in line with the developed energy policy by utilizing the available energy sources.

Martin Tiffen, who is the Managing Director of EACOP, gave an overview of the crude oil pipeline project to students, saying that the project has gone beyond its obligation to promote local content by creating employment, capacity building, and enable technology transfer.

The chairman of ATOGS, Abdulsamad Abdulrahim, urged the students to prepare for their positive engagement in the lucrative sector by venturing into opportunities that are being offered through the ongoing project investments.

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