Uganda’s oil industry received two belated Easter presents this week that, according to government officials, place the country on a solid path towards oil production.
Amidst jubilation following Uganda’s reported victory in the tax arbitration case against Heritage Oil and Gas in London on Wednesday; junior Minerals Minister, Peter Lokeris, revealed that President Yoweri Museveni had finally signed the Petroleum (Exploration, Development, Production) 2012 Bill, into law. Read More
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
Ugandan delegates attending a two-day Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) Implementation Conference in Kampala have expressed their worry over government’s apparent reluctance to protect oil revenues from corrupt officials.
Reacting to the opening speech by Uganda’s junior Minister for Finance in charge of investments, Hon. Aston Kajara, several Ugandan delegates observed that government had not instituted adequate measures to safe guard oil revenue, yet the Public Finance Bill would be tabled soon. Read More
Seven years of ‘Oil for Development’ aid from Norway has significantly boosted the resource management capacity of Uganda’s Petroleum Exploration and Production Department (PEPD)—but environmental management lags far behind, with serious weaknesses in the National Environment Monitoring Authority (NEMA) and its partner agencies, according to a recent evaluation of the programme.
PEPD has demonstrated “good leadership and coordination” of Norwegian aid and “effective internal organisational development,” the evaluation report observes.
The Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development is also praised for “good leadership so far” and “good cooperation [with] subordinate institutions” on issues relating to tax and revenue management. Read More
Tullow Oil plc this week released its 2012 full year results, portraying a strong financial performance and finally putting a figure to the commerciality of Kenya’s recent discoveries in the Lake Turkana area.
The report also confirmed that the explorer found more oil in Uganda in December, in the Lyec-1 well at the northern end of Jobi East, but ended its year on a dour note, amidst a $ 473 million tax dispute with the Uganda government. 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
A regional deal on oil infrastructure would likely be in the best interests of all East Africa’s players—but it doesn’t seem likely to happen, writes Chris Musiime in this special report, which will appear in our fourth print newsletter.
With the recent oil discoveries in Kenya, confirmed commercial quantities in Uganda and prospecting under way in Somalia and Ethiopia (as well as huge gas discoveries in Tanzania, which is also prospecting for oil), some estimates indicate that East Africa could soon be producing upwards of a million barrels of oil per day. Read More
With Uganda continuing to discover more oil and slowly moving towards oil production, many top jobs in the industry will be up for grabs.
But who is going to take up these top posts considering that few Ugandans have the qualifications needed? With an eye to future opportunities, forward-looking Ugandans have been applying to internationally recognized universities for further studies.
In Uganda, three higher education institutions—Makerere, Nkumba, and Uganda Christian University (UCU)—now offer petroleum-related studies at some level. UCU has begun with optional courses for students studying other subjects, while Nkumba is offering a two-year diploma course and a three-year Bachleor’s degree. Makerere, ranked ninth in Africa, has key departments in Geology and Petroleum Studies and will this year offer, for the first time, a Masters degree in Petroleum Geosciences. Read More
Any oil company intending to acquire an oil exploration licence in Kenya will have to present audited – accounts showing a minimum cash balance of at least one hundred million dollars. Successful bidders will be required to part with a signature bonus of one million dollars, as well as spend at least half a million dollars on “Community Development Projects” in Kenya every year. The oil companies will also have to spend a minimum of 200,000 dollars per year on training Kenyans to equip them with skills for the oil and gas industry.
Speaking to Oil in Uganda in an exclusive interview in Nairobi last week, Kenya’s Commissioner for Petroleum Energy, Martin Mwaisakenyi Heya, revealed that Kenya had decided to take measures to discourage smaller oil companies from entering its oil and gas sector. Read More
What are the next steps in establishing the Petroleum Authority and National Oil Company mandated by the upstream Petroleum Bill passed at the end of last year? Why has the president, who repeatedly intervened to push the bill through parliament, not yet got round to signing it? When will the government invite bids from companies keen to take up new exploration licences? What are the prospects for East African countries to come up with a joint, win-win, oil infrastructure development plan? And with so much oil and gas prospecting in the region, can Uganda be sure that there will be a local export market for products from the country’s planned oil refinery? These are the among the questions addressed by Mr. Bukenya Matovu, Senior Assistant Secretary in the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development and the ministry’s main spokesperson , in the following, exclusive interview, transcribed in full. Read More