Zambia’s Minister of Energy Affairs of Zambia, Mr. Peter Kapala, recently held a meeting with Tanzania’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Energy, Dr. Doto Biteko, to discuss the construction of a 24-inch oil pipeline connecting the two countries.
The meeting took place on 29th January 2024 in Tanzania’s commercial capital Dodoma and was attended by the Deputy Energy Minister, Ms. Judith Kapinga (Tanzania), the Permanent Secretaries of the Ministries of Energy, Engineer Felchesmi Mramba (Tanzania) and Dr. Chisangano Zyambo (Zambia), and various officials from the ministries and oil-related organizations.
Zambia’s Minister of Energy Kapala expressed the country’s great need for the project. He mentioned that the Zambian President, H.E. Haikande Hichilema, is pushing for its swift and careful implementation, with expectations of completing the project within two years.
He added that the demand for oil in Zambia is increasing due to the growth of development activities in the country, including the establishment of copper mines, so the Zambian Government is also ready to implement the project.
He explained that many companies have shown interest in providing funds for the implementation of the project, and mentioned that the intentions of these companies will be evaluated by experts to identify the best one.
On his part, Dr. Biteko stated that the ministerial discussions were a result of the visit by the Tanzanian President, H.E. Dr. Samia Suluhu Hassan, to Zambia in October 2023.
During her talks with the Zambian President, they deliberated on increasing investment in the current Tanzania-Zambia Oil Pipeline (TAZAMA), a 1,710 kilometers-long (1,063 mi) pipeline that delivers crude oil from the port of Dar-es-Salaam, in Tanzania to the Indeni Petroleum Refinery in Ndola, Zambia.
The current pipeline is insufficient to accompany the growing oil demands in both countries, Dr. Biteko stressed.
“Considering the significant progress in our two countries, the oil demand has increased. Hence, it is necessary to construct a new, larger pipeline that will transport oil from Tanzania’s port. This new pipeline, to be built alongside the TAZAMA Oil Pipeline, will also transport oil to the southern regions of Tanzania, reducing transportation costs and providing affordable oil to the citizens,” Dr. Biteko said.
He explained that the new pipeline would be 1,710 kilometers long, requiring a USD 2.5 billion investment, and expressed Tanzania’s readiness to execute this strategic project.