TZ to monitor oil and mining industry CSR

Presidential award1

TZ Vice President Mohamed Gharib Bilal (C) presiding over the CSRE Presidential award ceremony

 

Dar es Salaam-TANZANIA has finally adopted guidelines for the extractive sector’s corporate social responsibility and empowerment initiative mandating a minimum spending by companies to the benefit of surrounding communities.

The document puts the country among other African countries; South Africa, Ghana, Botswana, Nigeria and Mali that developed a guideline for extractive industry’s CSRs.

Afrika Reporter did not independently verify whether the requirements will be applicable amongst mining, oil and gas companies in quest for the Presidential Award on Corporate Social Responsibility and Empowerment (CSRE) in energy and mining sectors.

But, launching the guidelines at an award ceremony of this year’s CSRE recently in Dar es Salaam, Vice President Dr Mohammed Gharib Bilal said the guidelines will help monitor and evaluate the implementation of CSRs in the country.

“The extractive sector is critically important to the prosperity of Tanzanians and the country’s economy, it’s important therefore to continue monitoring the resources properly and carefully to ensure win-win situation in sharing their benefits with stakeholders, and especially the community,” the Vice President said and revealed that overall spending on CSRE programmes had risen from Tsh25.7billion- in 2013 to Tsh42.8billion- in 2014.

According to Bilal, it means companies in extractive industry will have to adopt good policies that aim at contributing significantly to the local communities towards achievement and delivery of social services and economic empowerment.

He also reiterated government commitment towards supporting the development of the extractive industry adding that plans are underway to update the geological data base through (Geological Survey of Tanzania-GST) in order to stimulate investment in the sector.

He said the government will continue developing supportive infrastructure and transparent licensing procedures as a priority to upgrade mineral licensing procedures and services.

Energy and Minerals Minister George Simbachawene told delegates the total procurement in local content among mining, oil and gas companies was 56 per cent, far-below South Africa (96 per cent) Mali (95 per cent) and Ghana (91 per cent).

“If the area is strengthened it can make major contribution to individuals, society and the national economy,” he said.

Tanzania, having made major discoveries of natural gas standing at 55.08 trillion cubic feet, eyes potential transformation of the locals by improving power supply reliability.

The minister explained that a local content committee has already been set-up to ensure realization of the initiative.

Speaking of the awards, the minister said they would help promote economic integration between the extractive sector and other sectors of the economy; create community participation; emphasize capacity building of local production, establish and maintain social economic relationships.

Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry Eng Ngosi Mwihava named the overall winner of 2014 Presidential Award on CSRE as the North Mara Gold Mine which also scooped the large scale mining company award.

Other awards; Small Scale Mining firm (Busorwa Mining Ltd), Oil and Gas Production (Songas Ltd), Oil and Gas Exploration, Mineral Exploration (Mantra Tz) and Medium Scale Mining Award presented to Shanta Mining (T) Ltd.

Eng Mwihava also named winners in special areas as; Buzwagi Gold Mine which took home infrastructure award, Statoil Tanzania on tertiary education development and Geita Gold Mine (GGM) that scooped presidential award on secondary education development.

GGM Vice President for sustainability Simon Shayo said his firm had invested over Tsh10.02billion- in the construction of a modern girl’s secondary school in Geita- Nyankumbu. “We also support health, water communication and electricity areas across the region.”

Deo Mwanyika, Acacia Tanzania Vice President said his firm spends over $10million annually to implement various social and economic schemes based on CSR.