Kenya, Uganda agree on crude oil pipeline route

The governments of Kenya and Uganda have announced that they have agreed on the route to be taken by the crude oil pipeline that will transport oil from the Albertine and Lokichar basins.

The announcement comes as Kenya’s president Uhuru Kenyatta continues his visit in Uganda where he has signed various bilateral treaties agreements with his Ugandan counterpart Yoweri Museveni.

According to an announcement by Kenyatta’s spokesman Manoah Esipisu the two leaders agreed subject to financing, security guarantees by Kenya, Hoima-Lokichar-Lamu oil pipeline starts as soon as possible.

The route decided favors the design submitted Tullow Oil and its partner Africa Oil starts from the Lokichar basin to Lamu .Three designs also had a start from Hoima including those by a consortium consisting of Tullow/Total/ CNOOC, while the rest are by Toyota Tsusho (Hoima-Manda Bay, Lamu)and Total (Hoima-Eldoret-Lamu/Mombasa).

The last design by Lapsset the development authority overseeing the Lamu Port Southern Sudan-Ethiopia Transport (LAPSSET) Corridor started from Juba in Southern Sudan through Lokichar and Moyale to the Lamu port.

“We are very pleased that the governments of Kenya and Uganda have agreed on the routing of the export pipeline and look forward to working with all stakeholders to move the joint oil development project forward,” says President and CEO of Africa Oil Keith Hill.

The announcement follows that by Uganda’s Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development that it had awarded United Kingdom’s Ramboll a contract to conduct an early-phase study for the “Hoima–Kampala Refined Petroleum Products Pipeline” in Uganda, East Africa.

The project concerns a proposed pipeline to be constructed to transport products of crude oil refinement from Uganda Oil Refinery in Hoima to a distribution terminal to be constructed in Buloba, app. 17 km west of Kampala with the total length of the pipeline/corridor is app. 210 km.

The 1300km pipeline is expected to take about three years to construct in time for production expected to commence in the year 2020 and will cost about $3 billion. It is expected that the pipeline could also serve Kenya and Uganda northern neighbor South Sudan which currently relies on Sudan for its exports amidst suspicions among the two states.

“The decision by the Governments of Uganda and Kenya with regard to the pipeline route will allow this significant project to move into a new technical and commercial phase,” said Tullow Oil CEO Aidan Heavey.

The pipeline could also service Ethiopia where oil exploration continues without luck despite similarities between Kenya’s Lokichar basin and various basins in the country

In May to Ministry of Energy and Petroleum principal secretary Joseph Njoroge said the search for the builder for the pipeline running from Uganda’s Hoima region through Lokichar in Turkana all the way to the Kenyan coast would commence in six months.

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