Author: Opportuna Kweka


Recent literature has shown that resource curse can occur at the subnational level, and in some cases without resources. This paper  draws from the literature on subnational resource curse and local-local content. It presents evidence from a study on processes in which  investments are implemented and negotiated between different actors. It provides an understanding on how and why resource curse  occurs. The paper is based on a study that focused on two cases of construction: the natural gas pipe from Mtwara to Dar es Salaam, and  the liquefied natural gas (LNG) in Lindi. A total of 85 interviews were done with local communities, the government, investors and non- governmental organizations. This was complemented by a review of different models for compensation or benefits to the communities.  The study found out that none of the frameworks for benefitting the local communities can work in the localities where resources are  extracted without modification. This is due to the fact that investors set unrealistic standards for the delivery of services, and there was  also a conflict between national and international standards. As such, the local content was not customized to the local context of the  localities where the natural gas was extracted, but only at the national level, which ultimately deprived these localities of the benefits of  having the expected and real development from their resources. The paper argues that for local content to bring positive changes in the communities where gas is extracted, a local-local content is needed. It further argues that for the frameworks to function, they need to be  applied not in isolation but in combination and modified to take into account the local-local context.