Photo: flickr.com/L.C.N√łttaasen

East Africa is the global oil and gas industry’s hottest frontier. Barely a month goes by, it seems, without a major discovery in Mozambique, Tanzania, Uganda, or the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo.

This new African windfall is hardly without precedent. Several west and central African states -- most notably Angola and Nigeria -- have already experienced petroleum booms of their own. Over the last decade, they benefited from a spectacular jump in oil prices. The spoils were enormous: from 2002 to 2012, Angola’s GDP jumped from $11 billion to $114 billion and Nigeria’s went from $59 billion to $243 billion.

The opportunity afforded by this extraordinary decade was unprecedented and is unlikely to recur. Sadly, however, decision-makers have mostly squandered it.

What can East Africa learn from past booms?

 

Seminar  with Ricardo Soares de Oliveira, University Lecturer in Comparative Politics (African politics) at the Department of Politics and International Relations, Oxford University, and associated senior researcher at CMI. Bring your lunch and join in.