Transportation of oil from the South Lokichar region namely the Amosing and Ngamia oilfields can commence following the signing of an agreement between the Kenyan government and the joint venture partners namely Tullow Oil, Africa Oil and Maersk Oil and Gas on Tuesday.
According to a statement released after the signing of the media EOPS specifically supports FFD by:
The early oil pilot scheme (EOPS) which hopes to transport an estimated 2000 barrels of oil daily in insulated tanktainers from five existing wells is seen by the partners as key in establishing logistical and technical infrastructure (e.g. roads, bridges) and other key arrangements crucial for supporting full field development as well as allow the operators to identify and manage risks associated with large capital-intensive projects like FFD and so reduce potential delays.
The EOPS is also expected to provide important technical well data that will greatly assist in planning for FFD and understand the behaviour of oil reservoirs and how they transform as they produce oil.
Further the EOPS according to the KJV will create limited employment and business opportunities that will assist in building capability which can then be scaled as and when the project reaches FFD
The players add that the transportation is needed as storage in Lokichar is getting exhausted as more appraisals continues with the obsolete refinery at the Kenyan coast providing a good alternative.
Through the EOPS the KJV also hopes to establish Kenya as a crude oil exporter and providing valuable information on the international market for Kenyan crude.
Already the permanent secretary in the ministry of energy Andrew Kamau has said that samples of the crude oil have been shipped in small quantities to various refineries in Europe and Asia to assess the market before hand many of which have given positive feedback due to the low sulphur content. The light and sweet crude can then through the EOPS test the market ahead of the 855 kilometer crude oil pipeline.
Tenders for the transportation of crude oil have already been received and the process is in the evaluation stage.