Kenya and Tanzania have signed a deal to commence the construction of a gas pipeline from Dar es Salaam to Mombasa in what the two countries’ leaders said was part of a long-term project to share energy resources.
At a joint Press conference in Nairobi, Tanzania’s President Samia Suluhu and her Kenyan counterpart Uhuru Kenyatta said they had agreed to build more interconnecting infrastructure, starting with a gas pipeline and roads.
The MoU on Cooperation in Natural Gas Transportation means respective Ministers of Energy can start negotiating the design, cost and other logistical needs for the pipeline to be built.
A joint communique said it will enhance “energy sufficiency” with Kenya keen on importing gas from Tanzania’s nascent plant.
No timelines were given but President Samia said respective technocrats have been directed to start working on it immediately.
“That is a long-term project and we are thankful that today we have signed an agreement and what remains is implementation,” she said.
“We have agreed on the need to ease the transportation of key energy resources and we have reached one such understanding on the transportation of gas. What we need to do now is start implementing the project.”
President Kenyatta said the two countries must build on their close cultural and historic ties to ensure their citizens benefit from interactions.
“We are connected by a common culture; we have a common language and heritage. We do not take Tanzania just as a neighbourly country; we consider it a brotherly country.
“We have agreed to work on the main highway between Malindi through Lungalunga to Bagamoyo.
“We also agree that we will work on the resumption of transportation services on Lake Victoria, which were useful in the movement of people and goods from Jinja to Kisumu and to Mwanza and Bukoba.”