Govt must own 50% in oil deals – Naloba

Namibia Local Business Association (Naloba) wants the government to own 50% of all natural Namibian resources in future.

This would allow Namibians to benefit from the country’s resources, the association says.

Naloba’s vice president, Peter Amadhila, said this after a meeting with minister of mines and energy Tom Alweendo yesterday.

Alweendo told mining companies at the Chamber of Mines of Namibia’s recent annual general meeting that the government would in future consider obtaining shares in the mining industry for free.

He, however, did not say how big a stake the goverment would target.

The proposal has attracted backlash from the chamber’s chief executive, Veston Malango, who has said it could put investors in the industry off.

Amadhila said Naloba is ready to assist the government in negotiating ‘win-win’ agreements.

“Naloba is always shuttered [50%] by the percentage the government secures as a direct share in its resources during negotiations, always ranging between as low as three, five or 10 if not zero [percent] in so many cases,” he said yesterday.

Alweendo called a meeting with Naloba after he was asked to retract remarks he made during the Namibia International Energy Conference (NIEC) last week.

He was also asked to publicly apologise to all Nambians.

Peter Amadhila


Naloba president Erastus Shapumba last week accused Alweendo of insulting the nation by saying Nambians should not feel entitled to natural resources such as oil and gas, but should rather work hard and be competitive.

“This statement is not only threatening, but also insulting and embarrassing, because every Namibian is entitled to the country’s natural resources as per the law,” Shapumba said, adding that the statement has embarrassed Namibians in the face of foreign investors.

President Hage Geingob in 2022 said the discovery of oil in Namibia does not belong to Namibians and should not excite people to think that “manna has come to earth”.

Meanwhile, Naloba recommended the minister should call for an urgent mining meeting with companies that have been mining in Namibia to deliberate on issues such as operations to be revived.

Naloba said some companies have been mining for more than 20 years without the government obtaining shares in them.

“This meeting would ensure that the government draws benefits for the entire nation and contributes to the Sovereign Wealth Fund,” Amadhila said yesterday.

Tom Alweendo


Alweendo has, however, not apologised or retracted his sentiments, but rather blamed the media for exhausting his remarks.

He said the government agrees with the association that Namibians should benefit from local mineral resources, but may not agree on how.

“We have to negotiate better deals depending on how you define it. We are trying, maybe it’s the pace at which we are doing it,” he said.

Alweendo said Namibia would soon introduce a national upstream petroleum local content policy to help local companies and Namibian citizens benefit from oil and gas opportunities across the industry’s value chain.


Local content laws are broad policy tools governments use across many industries.

The goals of local content are multifaceted, promoting domestic businesses by requiring a certain percentage of goods or services to be sourced from domestic companies, motivating international companies to share knowledge and expertise with local firms, stimulating job growth in the domestic economy, and encouraging investment in local infrastructure that benefits the industry.

Alweendo said implementation by local entrepreneurs and business people in the country is needed.

“Don’t sit and wait and say I am a Namibian, you should be a player,” he advised.

Alweendo said locals should avoid being used by “ruthless” foreign investors who offer to pay them millions to secure tenders.

He said locals should acquire skills to ensure they become top industry players.


Lawyer Kadhila Amoomo advises Alweendo to always use the right framing and context to avoid Namibians thinking he does not care about them.

“We will think you are a goalkeeper of the foreigners, instead of protecting us from the locals,” he says.

Amoomo says the Ministry of Mines and Energy is one of the country’s biggest ministries and should be seen as such.

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