Zambia and Tanzania are moving forward with plans to strengthen the regulation of the TAZAMA Pipeline through a memorandum of understanding (MoU) that will facilitate collaboration between the two countries.
Eng. Reynolds Bowa, the Chairperson of Zambia’s Energy Regulation Board (ERB), recently announced that discussions to finalize the MoU with Tanzania’s Energy and Water Utilities Regulatory Authority (EWURA) have reached advanced stages. This development follows an inspection and familiarization tour of the Tazama Pipelines Limited operations, spanning from Dar es Salaam to Ndola.
The TAZAMA Pipelines serve as shared infrastructure between Zambia and Tanzania, and both nations recognize the importance of ensuring efficient transmission of petroleum and regulatory compliance. Eng. Bowa explained, “Considering the mutual understanding between the two countries, EWURA and ERB have cross-cutting shared interests in the transmission of petroleum and ensuring compliance by carrying out their mandates of monitoring and regulation respectively.”
Once the MoU is signed, it is expected to significantly enhance the regulation of the TAZAMA Pipeline through collaborative efforts between the two energy regulators.
Additionally, Eng. Bowa highlighted the ERB’s efforts, in collaboration with the Ministry of Energy, to develop a statutory instrument (SI) that would facilitate third-party access to the pipeline. This SI has already received approval in principle from the cabinet after being submitted to the Ministry of Justice.
Eng. Bowa emphasized the importance of creating a level playing field and ensuring that all parties interested in importing Low Sulphur Gasoil (LSGO) through the pipeline can engage with TAZAMA for arrangements in proportion to their established market share.
He further expressed the ERB’s desire to see TAZAMA embark on pipeline expansion projects to eventually transport the entire LSGO supply. Currently, the pipeline meets 80% of the national LSGO demand, with oil marketing companies (OMCs) responsible for importing the remaining 20% to ensure the market’s needs are met.
Eng. Bowa concluded by noting that the ERB is satisfied with the current compliance of the pipeline infrastructure and relevant standards and regulations. However, the regulator will continue to encourage TAZAMA to pursue self-improvement to achieve higher efficiencies, ultimately benefiting consumers in both Zambia and Tanzania through the efficient transportation of LSGO.