Deficiency of local skills can be major barriers to local participation in the oil and gas company’s activities.
Some oil and gas companies deal with this by investing in skills development programs. This include:
1. Partnering with local universities. Norwegian Statoil operator of Area 1 offshore Tanzania partnered with Department of finance at the University of Dar es Salaam offer scholarship for Masters of finance and accounting in oil and gas.
2. Technical education-The consortium of multinational oil and gas companies(Shell, Exxon Mobil, Ophir Energy Pavilion energy and Statoil that plan to build Tanzania LNG plant, have invested 1.9 billion dollars to facilitate the skills development programs for young people in Mtwara and Lindi program implemented by Vocational education and training Authority (VETA) Voluntary services overseas (VSO) and International GIZ.
The program aimed to increase youth employment in the oil and gas sector by training them into transferable skills which includes welding and fabrication carpentry and joinery, plumbing and pipe fitting, electrical installation and maintenance, food preparation and mechanics
3.Sector-specific personal training. BG (currently Shell) has been select talented Tanzanian graduate and give them an opportunities to go abroad and training them in critical technical areas such as Geology, petroleum engineering, Petroleum geochemistry and so on.
The best approach to deal with the skills gap is to identify local content needs and train the youths, both educated and uneducated to prepare them for integration into their God-given resources. Oil and gas companies may also shoulder responsibility by increasing access to primary education. They can build primary schools in the areas they operate.
This is critical for the sustainable development of the oil and gas companies in Tanzania. In doing so oil companies may be accepted for the way they enhance the livelihood.