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Uganda, Tanzania to fastrack oli pipeline construction

image souce: pipeline-journal.net
Uganda and Tanzania have agreed on the fast-tracking of the crude oil export pipeline development project. The 1,443 kilometer pipeline will connect from Buseruka in Hoima district to Tanga port in Tanzania.

The resolution follows a meeting between Uganda and Tanzanian officials to discuss modalities of having construction of the pipeline done by the year 2020. The meeting, held in Hoima town last evening was also attended by officials from exploration companies Tullow, CNOOC and Total.

Energy and Mineral Development Minister Engineer Irene Muloni told journalists after the meeting that timelines have now been set to have the pipeline front-end engineering design launched in October this year. Muloni added that land acquisition and project funding equally need to be fast-tracked.

Construction of the Uganda-Tanzania oil pipeline is slated to start in January next year, according to Uganda’s Energy Minister Irene Muloni.

The construction of the pipeline, which will export Ugandan crude oil to the international market, will be complete in 2020.

Muloni told a press conference in Hoima, Tanzania, that following closed-door discussions with the Tanzanian delegation in Hoima, the two countries had agreed to fast-track the project which will cover 1,443 kilometres, reported the Daily Monitor.

Oil explorers have discovered more than 6.5 billion barrels of crude oil reserves from about 40 percent of the Albertine basin in western Uganda.
Uganda’s new round of oil exploration licensing may see the country increasing its petroleum reserves, if the surveys prove positive.

She said the delegations from Uganda and Tanzania would meet again in Tanzania in October to launch the front-end-engineering-design for the project.

Muloni added that feasibility studies estimate the project to cost $3.55 billion. Land acquisition assessments, surveys, environmental and social impact studies will be conducted before construction starts.

A pipeline company will be set up and Uganda, Tanzania and other interested East African states will have shares in it.

Hoima — Construction of the Uganda-Tanzania crude oil export pipeline is planned to start in January next year, Uganda's Energy minister Irene Muloni has said.

Ms Muloni, who led a Ugandan team that held closed door discussions with the Tanzanian delegation in Hoima Town on Tuesday, told the media that the two countries had agreed to fast-track the project which will cover 1,443 kilometres.

The construction of the pipeline, meant to export the Ugandan crude oil to the international market, is planned to be finalised by 2020.

Oil explorers have discovered more than 6.5 billion barrels of crude oil reserves from about 40 per cent of the Albertine basin in western Uganda. Uganda's new round of oil exploration licensing may see the country increasing its petroleum reserves, if the surveys prove positive.

"Every activity in respect to the project will be done in a fast tracking mode. We have agreed to meet in Tanga (Tanzania) in October this year to launch the front-end-engineering-design for the project," Ms Muloni told the press at Miika Eco Resort and Hotel, where the meeting was held.

She added that feasibility studies estimate the project to cost $3.55 billion. Land acquisition assessments, surveys, environmental and social impact studies will be conducted before construction starts.

She said a pipeline company will be set up and Uganda, Tanzania and other interested East African states will have shares in it.

"The pipeline is very attractive and viable. Securing financing will be explored in much detail. Contacts are being made to potential funders," Ms Muloni said.

Uganda and Tanzania political leaders and technocrats agreed to name the pipeline project reflecting the East African Community and the second ministerial meeting endorsed, "East African crude oil pipeline (EACOP)".

According to Ms Muloni, the meeting also endorsed the use of the colours of the East African community flag in the newly-created logo for the project since it is regional and it is open to other countries in the region to join.

"The ministerial meeting agreed to develop a project schedule and work modalities to expedite necessary approvals including; land access, environmental and social aspects, routing, project agreements and other activities requiring national or local government consents," a joint communiqué signed by Ms Muloni and her Tanzanian counterpart, Prof Sospeter Muhongo, reads in part.

Prof Muhongo said he had instructions from the Tanzanian President to ensure that the project is achieved in the shortest possible time.

"As we partner with Uganda in this project, we wish to assure our Ugandan brothers and sisters that we have the experience in pipeline construction. All our activities will be done in accelerated speed to achieve the project by 2020," Prof Muhongo said.

He cited the 1,710-kilometre Tanzama crude pipeline between Tanzania and Zambia and Mtwara-Dar es Salaam gas pipeline covering 560.56 Kilometres as some of the projects that the Tanzanians constructed. He said 95 per cent of the pipeline in the Tanzanian territory will be close to tarmacked roads and a railway line which will make it easier to mobilise materials during construction.

Out of the 1,443 kilometres of the pipeline, more than 1,100 will be on the Tanzanian side.

"Our side is not very steep and densely populated. The route is favorable for speedy construction," Prof Muhongo said.

He said it is the wish of the Tanzanians to use the pipeline to also export its huge gas resources to East African states. Since land in Tanzania is owned by the state, Prof Muhongo added, completing processes of land acquisition will be much faster.
  • Source: The MONITOR via allafrica.com written by Francis Mugerwa

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