April 25, 2016 - EAST AFRICA - Construction of the 1,403-kilometre pipeline to transport crude oil from Hoima in Uganda to Tanga Port in Tanzania is expected to be completed by June 2020, the Minister for Energy and Minerals, Professor Sospeter Muhongo, announced.
Implementation plan for the US $4 billion dollars (about 8.7 trillion/-) will be up for discussion next Friday in Tanzania where the Ugandan Minister for Energy and Minerals, Ms Irene Muloni, will lead a delegation from Kampala.
"At this meeting, I will host the Ugandan minister and other officials to map up implementation plan for the project. The meeting will also be attended by officials from companies with stake in the discovered oil in Uganda," he explained.
The companies include Total E&P of France, Tullow Oil of United Kingdom as well as China National Offshore Oil Corporation. Prof Muhongo showered praise on President John Magufuli for his efforts, which enabled the country to clinch the deal.
"It will be an honour to complete the construction before June 2020 when President Magufuli will be ending his first term in office. Dr Magufuli formed a superb team to make a follow-up on the matter and this has yielded positive results.
"I am equally grateful to President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda for choosing Tanga Port," Prof Muhongo told journalists after he landed at the Julius Nyerere International Airport (JNIA) from Kampala.
Last Saturday, Uganda chose the Tanzanian route to export its crude oil amid competition from Kenya which also wanted to clinch the deal to transport oil to yet to be constructed Lamu Port in North-Eastern Kenya.
President Museveni made the decision to construct the pipeline through Tanzania during the 13th Northern Corridor Integration Projects (NCIP) summit in Kampala, which was also attended by President Paul Kagame and Uhuru Kenyatta of Rwanda and Kenya, respectively.
The envisaged pipeline through Tanzania will be of benefit not only to Uganda and Tanzania but others countries in the region such as Kenya, South Sudan, Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
"It will be cheaper and easier for these countries to use the pipeline compared to any other port in the East Africa Region, the Tanzanian route is cost-effective, reliable and secure," Prof Muhongo remarked.
The envisaged 24-inch conduit to cover 1,403 kilometres is expected to convey 200,000 barrels of crude oil per day for exports. The project is expected to create 15,000 jobs during its execution after which upon completion it will employ about between 1,000 and 2,000 people.
It will pass through Kagera, Geita, Shinyanga, Tabora and Singida to Tanga. Uganda has so far discovered 6.5 billion barrels of the precious liquid along the Lake Albert basin. The first finding was made by Hardman Resources in 2006 which was later acquired by Tullow Oil.
At present, three companies own 33.3 per cent each of the oil fields and they include Total E&P, Tullow Oil and CNOOC.
The companies plan to construct an oil refinery to process 60,000 barrels per day to cater for demand of petroleum products in East Africa while between 200,000 and 600,000 barrels will be transported in crude form through the pipelines for exports outside the EAC.
- Tanzania Daily News.