Barclays Managing Director, Jeremy Awori said
the strategic move in the oil industry will enable MDAL to
acquire a drilling and workover oil rig to be deployed in
exploration in Kenya.
"Signing a financing agreement of this
value reflects the ability and commitment of Barclays Bank to
shoulder its responsibilities in financing the projects of
leading companies which have a clear strategy," Awori said
in a statement.
"It is also aligned to our strategy of
making Barclays the ‘Go- To Bank’ for asset financing
solutions in the market," Awori said.
Kenya and the entire East African region have
witnessed intensified exploratory activity since 2003, which led
to the discoveries of oil and gas in Uganda and Tanzania. There
is also ongoing exploration in Ethiopia.
The East African nation has
drilled 31 dry wells in Isiolo, northeastern Kenya and Lamu
(Southeast), and has lost a lot of money.
Officials said the discovery of the commercial
quantities of oil in Turkana, one of the poorest communities,
should also ignite new investments in the economy of Turkana.
Kenya has never made any substantive
commercial oil discoveries despite ongoing oil exploration that
started in the East African nation in the early 1930s and later
picked off in the 1950s.
Oil exploration blocks in the semi-desert
areas of Mandera in northern Kenya were largely abandoned after
explorers failed to discover commercial quantities of oil in the
Speaking on the new deal, Awori termed it an
extremely significant transaction that highlights the bank’s
commitment towards the growth of the Kenya’s economy.
Apart from financing the rig acquisition
process, Barclays will arrange and execute the five-year
financing plan in a timely move that aims to position financial
intermediaries’ stake in the oil industry as focus shifts on
Kenya as a potential oil producing country in the next decade.
Marriott Drilling Africa Limited’s Managing
Director Jonathan Hobday said the deal was in line with its
ambitious growth strategy to increase its rig fleet by adding
state-of-the-art equipment where opportunities arise.
"Today marks the start of a new era for
us in East Africa.
"We believe that banks have a
responsibility to assist companies like Marriott in the
development of oil resources in Kenya and elsewhere in East
This financing agreement with Barclay is a
catalyst to spur our business," said Hobday.