The recent and on-going discovery of crude oil and natural gas clusters and rare earths across most of East Africa indicates that the region is poised to become a hub of energy and materials production in the coming decades, significantly enhancing the region’s economic prospects. It is estimated that oil and gas contribution to East Africa’s GDP is likely to increase to 10-20% offering an opportunity for the sector to hasten economic take-off. While we expect large increases in revenues to governments and profits to private commercial entities directly involved in oil and gas logistics, there are legitimate concerns that local populations may not derive sufficient benefits from these resources, given the relatively few employment opportunities expected to be generated as examples from other mining, oil and gas producing countries have shown. In addition, there are concerns of potential conflicts over access to common resources such as pasture, water and farmland.
Proactive community engagement and stakeholder management is critical to managing local expectations and helping local entrepreneurs harness market opportunities presented by proximity to mining, oil and gas operations and the larger economy more broadly. Onward Resources supports the development of extractive industries' local content strategies and works with actors in the mining, oil and gas sectors to manage projects that deliver tangible and lasting benefits to local economies and communities. In addition, we provide social impact assessment and stakeholder consultation, social investment design and strategy development, and impact monitoring.