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Government Pledges First Oil Production by 2025


Govt committed to first oil by 2025, investors protection unit head says
The Head of the State House Investors Protection Unit (SHIPU) Edith Nakalema delivering her speech during a joint Press briefing on the Investments on the Oil and Gas sector in Uganda, this function took place at the SHIPU offices in Kampala on the 6th March 2024. Photo by PPU

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Colonel Edith Nakalema, the head of the State House Investors Protection Unit (SHIPU), reassured Ugandans of the government’s dedication to achieving the milestone of producing the first oil by 2025 in a joint media briefing held at the State House Investors Protection Unit Offices in Kampala. She emphasized that alongside this commitment, ensuring the protection of Ugandans’ interests in the oil sector remains a top priority.

Colonel Nakalema highlighted the unit’s responsibility to safeguard every investment in the country, including those in the oil and gas sector. She stressed the importance of protecting these investments to ensure the steady progress and prosperity of Uganda.

During the briefing, Proscovia Nabbanja, the Chief Executive Officer of the Uganda National Oil Company (UNOC), echoed Colonel Nakalema’s sentiments, emphasizing the progress made in the country’s oil and gas sector. Nabbanja expressed confidence in meeting the deadline for first oil production by 2025, citing significant advancements in the sector’s development.

Detailing Uganda’s petroleum resource base, Nabbanja revealed that the country’s confirmed reserves amount to 6.5 billion barrels of Stock Tank Oil-Initially-In-Place (STOIIP), with an estimated 1.4 to 1.7 billion barrels considered recoverable. Currently, only 40 percent of the Albertine Graben, the region with significant oil deposits, is licensed for exploration and extraction activities.

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Moreover, Nabbanja disclosed the government’s comprehensive commercialization plan, which includes the establishment of key infrastructure projects such as the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP), the Kabalega Industrial Park, and the Uganda Oil Refinery in Kabaale, Hoima district. These initiatives aim to optimize the utilization of Uganda’s oil and gas resources, fostering economic growth and job creation.

She emphasized the strategic significance of the Kabalega Industrial Park, which is expected to contribute significantly to Uganda’s economy. Through the park’s development, operationalization, and management, UNOC seeks to generate substantial economic benefits, including adding up to USD 4.9 billion annually to the national GDP and creating 35,000 job opportunities.

Regarding storage infrastructure, Nabbanja highlighted UNOC’s operation of the Jinja Storage Terminal, a facility crucial for storing refined petroleum products. She revealed plans for another storage terminal in Namwabula, Mpigi, which will serve both the government’s strategic reserves and provide storage for oil marketing companies.

Nabbanja also discussed UNOC’s recent acquisition of sole importation status for petroleum products, aiming to enhance supply security and stabilize prices. This move is anticipated to mitigate the impact of shortages and eliminate middlemen whose margins affect fuel prices.

In addressing environmental and social concerns, Nabbanja reassured the public that projects such as the EACOP are developed in compliance with internationally accepted standards. She emphasized the socio-economic benefits of the oil and gas sector, including infrastructure development, skills transfer, and employment opportunities, underscoring the positive impact on Uganda’s overall welfare and development.

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