About 36 million people out of a total of 40 million live without electricity in Tanzania. About 80% of these live in rural areas where only 2% have access to electricity1. At the same time, Tanzania spends around $1.3 to $1.6 billion per year (25% of its total foreign exchange earnings) on oil imports2. Investment in biofuel could help Tanzania cater to rural electricity needs, improve energy security, and save valuable foreign exchange earnings.
The government of Tanzania and foreign donors have therefore identified biofuels as a priority sector and are providing extensive support for investments. The National Biofuels Task Force is working on completing formal guidelines for biofuel investments. The latest draft National Biofuels Guidelines was released in November 2008, and includes inputs from NGOs like WWF‐Tanzania and Hakiardhi.