You can hire the best lawyers and the most outstanding consultants money can buy – if your project does not meet minimum standards of commerciality and legal regulatory realism, it won’t fly. Nobody spends 30 billion on a project that throws up such massive doubts. Tanzania seems to have the gas in the ground – fine. But having gas in the ground is worth almost nothing. if bringing it to market costs more than what the market is prepared to give you for it you have a dud. We call that stranded gas. Greedy, unrealistic expectations of a government won’t make the project any better.
Tanzania has selected U.S. law firm Baker Botts LLP as an adviser to help conclude talks with international oil companies over a long-delayed $30 billion liquefied natural gas terminal.