KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) --
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni on Monday
said the country is committed to building its first oil refinery in the western
Museveni made the remarks during a meeting with the
delegation of Albertine Graben Refinery Consortium (AGRC), said the east African
country’s State House in a statement.
The president told the AGRC, a joint venture of the Uganda National Oil
Company and four Italian and Mauritian companies, that the government is working
on the start of oil production, and will use the oil revenue to build national
The government is also engaging with oil companies over the planned
construction of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline between the oil wells in
Albertine Graben, western Uganda, and the Tanzania seaport of Tanga, Museveni
Uganda expects to start commercial production of oil by 2022.
The country has over 6.5 billion barrels of oil reserves, showed the figures
of Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development.
Three international companies, namely China National Offshore Oil
Corporation, Total, and Tullow have an equal stake in Uganda’s so far discovered
oil wells in Albertine Graben.
Uganda urges local companies to prepare
for oil and gas projects
KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) --
Uganda has urged local construction companies to build capacity
in a bid to reap from the 15-20 billion U.S. dollars investment that will be
generated by the development of the oil and gas sector over the next three
Monica Azuba Ntege, minister of works and transport, in a statement issued
here on Monday by the Petroleum Authority of Uganda (PAU), said engineers should
be prepared to tap into the upcoming construction phase by international oil
The minister said civil works and provision of available construction
materials are ring-fenced for Ugandans.
She was speaking at a meeting called to sensitize engineers and building
contractors about the opportunities in the oil and gas sector.
The meeting organized by PAU in partnership with other government agencies,
was part of efforts to prepare local firms for the development phase of the oil
and gas sector with planned construction of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline
(EACOP), oil refinery, among others. EACOP will run from the oil fields in
western Uganda to the Tanzanian seaport of Tanga.
Ntege urged professionals, contractors, manufacturers and suppliers with the
necessary competencies and capacity to extend their sphere of influence and
explore the opportunities.
Ernest Rubondo, Executive Director of PAU, said experience from oil producing
countries across the world shows that for the oil and gas sector to spur
inclusive growth, deliberate efforts have to be made to enable the benefits from
the sector reach the wider population.
Rubondo said this can only be achieved through growing the participation of
Ugandans and Ugandan entities in the provision of goods and services to the
"The construction and engineering subsector of the economy is one of the
areas which has a very significant potential to benefit from the development of
the country’s oil and gas sector.
This is especially so because the construction and engineering subsector
provides opportunities for high value participation of Uganda entities," he
He said potential local suppliers will be empowered with knowledge on the
construction and engineering requirements for the oil and gas sector in terms of
quantities, scope, timelines and standards.
Robert Kasande, permanent secretary ministry of energy and mineral
development, said local companies need to comply with the required standards or
risk missing out on the opportunities once the Final Investment Decision (FID)
is taken. FID is the detailed plan which an oil company will follow to develop
an oil field.
"FID will surely be taken. It may be tomorrow or the other day but whatever
time it comes, we should prepare and ensure that whatever you take from here,
you put into practice.
That way, when time for bidding comes, you are ready to participate," Kasande
Andrew Kasekende, a Director at ICS Engineering and Environment Limited,
which is working with United Kingdom-based Worley on the Resettlement Action
Plan for the EACOP, said there are several challenges that hinder local
companies from getting contracts.
"From experience, the major challenges faced by local companies are lack of
awareness of oil and gas standards, high cost of capital, and business
uncertainty after investment," he said.
Brian Tahinduka, an official from Stanbic Bank Uganda Limited, said the bank
is ready to fund up to 54 million dollars for a single project.
"As long as you have the capacity and capability, we have the money.
"We are the only institution with a unique triple A rated mark in Africa for
such huge projects," he said.
Uganda expects to start commercial production of oil by 2022. Ministry of
energy and mineral development figures show that the country has so far
discovered over 6.5 billion barrels of oil.
Three international companies, China National Offshore Oil Corporation, Total
and Tullow have an equal stake in Uganda’s so far discovered oil wells in the
Albertine Graben, in the western part of the country.
Experts urge Uganda on human capital as
formulation of development plan starts
KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) --
As Uganda embarks on formulation of its third five-year National
Development Plan (NDP), experts meeting here have urged the government to focus
on human capital development.
A joint statement issued on Friday by the National Planning Authority (NPA)
and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) said the experts urged the
government to invest more in its people starting at an early age and pay more
attention to issues affecting their health and education.
Critical groups such as the youth, elderly and persons with disabilities are
also important if the country is to achieve meaningful and sustainable inclusive
"Government of Uganda demonstrates acknowledgement that investing in people
is not only critical, but necessary to ensure sustained inclusive growth," said
Elsie Attafuah, UNDP Resident Representative.
Joseph Muvawala, executive director of NPA said the country’s abundant labor
needs to be equipped with globally competitive skills, relevant knowledge, good
health and positive attitudes.
Diana Sekaggya Bagarukayo, education specialist at the World Bank said the
country needs to increase expenditure on education annually to improve learning,
enrollment and completion rates. She said in comparison, other sub-Saharan
countries spend 16 percent of their national budget on education, compared to
the nation’s 10 percent.
Juma Waswa Balunywa, Principal of Makerere University Business School, warned
that the job market demands are changing very fast hence the need for a forecast
of jobs and skills that will be relevant for the future and ensuring that the
education curriculum and learning institutions are training for that.
The experts were meeting on Thursday at the first breakfast policy series
aimed at providing a multi-stakeholder platform to deliberate and build
consensus around the strategic issues relevant to the NDPIII formulation
The current NDPII expires at the end of June 2020 and the next Development
Plan (NDPIII) should be in place by September 2019 to guide the budget strategy
for the financial year 2020/21.