There are 6 treatment arms: A, B, C , D, E and F, that are directly read from different scripts. The objective is to learn first how people react to the high gas revenues expectations presented by many actors in Tanzanian political discourse. To this end, we compare the survey answers of one group (A) who is not read any text, with group (B) who is read the script below (high expectations script):
Tanzania has discovered large amounts of natural gas offshore Mtwara and Lindi. Some politicians have previously stated that these gas resources could generate very large revenues and many new jobs. The gas resources, could transform Tanzania into a much wealthier country. In that respect, one leading politician recently stated that “the government have embarked on a grand plan, and Tanzanians in general should expect economic revolution in few years to come.”
Today, the expected gas revenues are much lower than what they have been in the past. Some experts fear that the new moderate discourses influence citizens trust in the government and propensity to protest. To test this, group C is read the same script as group B, plus (moderate expectations script):
Today, however, Tanzanian future gas benefits and revenues are in reality very uncertain. According to some recent estimates, if things continue the way they are, there could in fact be very modest revenues, if any, from gas extraction.
One of the main reasons why the revenues could be low, is the resource curse and the rentier state. People may react strongly to this possibility of gas revenues weakening the public sector. To analyze resource curse effects, group D will also be read this script (resource curse script)
One reason is that gas revenues are often poorly managed, weaken the bureaucracy and lead to a more authoritarian state. Potential incomes and benefits then become much smaller than what they could have been.
Another potential adverse effect of petroleum revenues is to increase income inequalities. Again, that could be an important source of factor changing citizens’ views. Group E will then also be read this script (inequality script):
Moreover, gas revenues are often unequally distributed. Some few, often those already rich, typically become even richer, while the majority does not benefit much, causing inequality to rise.
Finally, group F is read all scripts.