Kenya Oil and Gas (upstream) sector fact file – shortened

Source: Ministry of Energy and Petroleum

1950-1992:  30 wells drilled by international oil companies in Kenya’s sedimentary basins. Two more wells drilled in the period stretching to 2010. None of them was a discovery.

Basically 1992 to 2005 was a dormant period that saw zero wells drilled.

2012: Ngamia 1 discovery by Tullow Oil and venture partner Africa Oil. Since then there has been accelerated drilling with 37 wells drilled in the period thereafter.

Kenya has four sedimentary basins: Lamu basin 261000 km2, Mandera basin 43000 km2, Anza 81000 km2 and the Tertiary Rift 100,000 km2.

Average Basin thickness: Lamu 12,000m, Mandera 10,000m, Anza 10,000m and tertiary Rift 4,000m.

Current status of exploration

Tests conducted on oil discoveries in Tertiary rift place discovered recoverable crude oil reserves at 600 million barrels. Appraisal drilling results point in to excess of one billion barrels in crude oil reserves. Appraisal ongoing by extended well testing.

latest exploration map


Kenyan government and JV partners in Lokichar in the process of field development plan in South Lokichar.

Monetization of discovered reserves expected to be in 2018.

Kenya’s current licensing process

licensing process kenya

Crude Oil Pipeline

Pipeline to run from Hoima in Uganda westwards through Lokichar in Turkana to Kenya’s coast region

Contract to carry out feasibility awarded to Toyota Tshusho in 2014, to be funded by Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda.

Interim report already submitted to the respective governments.

Final report was to be submitted by April 2015 (status – unknown) and was to form basis of specifications for the construction of crude oil pipeline.


After Ngamia-1 discovery the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum approached the World Bank for assistance to forestall the challenges associated with the growth of petroleum sector through:

  • review Petroleum (Exploration and Production) Act Chapter 308 of the Laws of Kenya and Model Production Sharing Contract(PSC),
  • Development of Natural Gas Fiscal and Contractual Terms
  • Initiate capacity building in the in the country’s petroleum sector (KEPTAP Project)
  • Draft National Energy and Petroleum Policy in place
  • Draft Petroleum (Exploration, Development and Production) Bill and the Model Production Sharing Contract (PSC)
  • Energy Bill
  • Local Content Regulations amongst others
  • Petroleum master plan study report being finalized
  • Demarcation of about 14 new blocks ongoing and will be Gazetted soon. Revised total number of blocks to be 60.
%d bloggers like this: