Fishermen at sea during sunset in Zanzibar’s Stone Town. The island can now issue oil exploration licences. PHOTO | FILE
A senior TPDC official who preferred anonymity said there was a growing consensus in the government that Zanzibar should be allowed to award exploration licences but the island faces legal challenges.
The official said the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea requires that oil and gas exploration firms conduct exploration in areas with the Extended Continental Shelf (ECS) beyond 200 miles outside the Exclusive Economic Zone (EZZ) but Zanzibar did not fulfil the requirement because it was only an archipelago.