South Sudan is urgently working on an alternative route to get its crude oil to markets by road, in the short term, if the agreement it signed last week in Addis Ababa with its Northern counterpart collapses again.
The two countries agreed that South Sudan would resume production by March 24, 2013, following months of back and forth negotiations.
South Sudan suspended oil production in January last year, accusing the North of charging exorbitant pipeline transit fees. The two sides signed an agreement last September, for Juba to resume exports through Sudan, but disagreements over border security issues delayed its implementation. Read More
John Page, a Senior Fellow of Global Economy and Development at the Brookings Institution, together with Mark Henstridge of Oxford Policy Management, authored a paper, Managing a Modest Boom: Oil Revenues in Uganda, in which they argue that Uganda’s oil revenues will take “at least a decade” to arrive and will not by themselves transform the country, probably growing to no more than five percent of gross domestic product for a thirty-year period.
Mr. Page was recently in Kampala to participate in a regional oil and gas summit organized by the Economic Policy Research Center (EPRC), a Makerere University-based think tank.
Oil in Uganda talked to him about Uganda’s oil industry. Read More
Uganda does not necessarily have to adopt the Norwegian model for it to have a sustainable oil industry, says Zimbabwean born Dr. Duncan Clarke, an author and commentator on oil issues in Africa.
In a presentation to the 6th East African Petroleum Exhibition and Conference in Arusha last week, Dr. Clarke referred to the Norwegian model as the “advocacy NGO type model” which “constrains the growth of the natural resource.” Read More
Ugandan motorists will fill up their cars with locally processed fuel in four years time, according to the permanent secretary of the country’s energy ministry.
Addressing the sixth East African Petroleum Conference and Exhibition in Arusha last week, Fred Kabagambe Kaliisa insisted that Uganda’s refinery will start operating in 2016/17, with an initial capacity of 60,000 barrels of oil per day (bopd). It will be expanded two years later to enhance production to 120,000 bopd, and later to 180,000 bopd “to match the growing regional petroleum products demand.” Read More
Key speakers at the ongoing regional forum on oil and gas in Kampala have emphasised the need for proper management of oil revenues as the East African Region prepares to join the world’s oil and gas producers.
While opening the forum, Uganda’s Finance Minister, Hon. Maria Kiwanuka, stressed that oil revenues should be used to boost the sustainability of other productive sectors. “We want the black gold underground to facilitate the green gold above the ground”, she said. “Agriculture and tourism are all renewable resources vital to our economy. They need good financing for sustainability”. Read More
The Oil in Uganda team extends warm, seasonal greetings to all our readers. Also, to entertain you in between bouts of feasting, we have prepared a little quiz to test your general knowledge of oil in Uganda and beyond. Doing the quiz won’t, alas, make you a millionaire, but you may glean some interesting–and some shocking–facts. The answers to the following twenty questions appear at the end of the text—together with a ‘performance assessment’ depending on how many questions you answered correctly. Read More
Everybody knows that oil is all about money for the companies, the contractors, the government, the speculators rushing to buy up land in Bunyoro . . . But if we re-phrase that thought as “It’s all about economics” it suddenly seems complicated and remote—something that non-economists struggle to understand. Yet, with parliament currently considering a Public Finance Bill that will make key decisions on oil revenue management, much wider public debate is needed over how Uganda’s share of the money should be spent and invested. The 3rd issue of Oil in Uganda’s quarterly, print newsletter, which is now rolling off the presses, tries to demystify the economics as a contribution to the debate. Here we re-publish one of the main articles from the newsletter, UGANDA’S OIL REVENUES: TEN KEY QUESTIONS Read More
Uganda should move carefully and without haste to develop its oil industry and wider economy. Well crafted laws, with institutional checks and balances, are essential to govern the commercial aspects. Revenues should be deposited overseas in hard currency accounts, with a portion saved for the future—because development cannot take place overnight, it needs to phased. Increased government spending should be tied to a comprehensive development plan. Environmental, health and safety issues should be governed by regional laws that bind international oil companies to the same standards they would have to apply in their countries of incorporation—because otherwise they ‘won’t take it seriously.’
So says Columbia University professor, scholar-activist and renowned extractives industries expert, Jenik Radon, who has been delivering a series of lectures at Makerere University. Oil in Uganda caught up with him as he packed his bags to return to storm-buffeted New York City. Read More
More than a million tourists visited Uganda in 2011, bringing US$ 805 million in foreign exchange—the country’s biggest forex earner by a large margin. The Lonely Planet travel guide company has since named Uganda “top tourist destination for 2012.” But what has been the impact of the 16 oil exploration wells drilled inside Murchison Falls National Park, one of the main tourist attractions? What is happening to the animals that the tourists flock to see? Oil in Uganda visited Murchison to ask park staff and neighbouring communities, and also contacted tour operators who expressed concern for the future of their trade as the oil industry ramps up for production. Read More
Uganda should deploy oil revenues to create universal old age pensions and universal health insurance to make a more humane society. This would be a real investment in the future of the nation. So says Dr. Ezra Suruma, Uganda’s former Minister of Finance, in this exclusive interview with Oil in Uganda. He accepts that it will be prudent to place some of the revenues in an Investment Fund—because too much money flowing too fast into the general budget would be difficult to absorb. But, he argues, all Ugandan citizens should become individual shareholders in the Investment Fund, in order to ensure that each and every citizen benefits directly through annual dividends—and also to create citizen-shareholder pressure for transparent and corruption-free management of the funds. Read More