THE Tanzanian Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC) this week began a series of meetings with liquefied natural gas investors ahead of signing a host government agreement set to transform the fortunes of one of East Africa’s poorest countries.

With public debt exceeding 40% of GDP and rising, policymakers could do with a sound injection of capital — and that’s just what they will get if ExxonMobil, Statoil, Ophir Energy and Shell (through its purchase of BG Group) reach final investment decisions on LNG trains.