BY DOREEN NASASIRA –
President Museveni has highlighted that once the Final Investment Decision (FID) has been made, oil will flow out of the ground in Uganda within 36 months from the date of FID.
He noted that all stakeholders including the government of Tanzania are committed to bringing all negotiations for supporting infrastructure that would inform the FID on the part of the venture partners, in the Oil and Gas industry to a conclusion, and this is likely to happen before the end of the year 2019.
The President made the remarks in his speech delivered by the Prime Minister Dr Ruhakana Rugunda at the 5th Oil and Gas convention held at Commonwealth Resort, Munyonyo, on Wednesday.
The convention was organized under the theme “2019 Decision Time: “Countdown to commercialization.”
President Museveni said progress has already been made in taking forward the key projects leading to the first oil, and these involve putting in place the required infrastructure to produce and commercialize the oil and gas resources discovered in the country.
He emphasized that there is no short cut for a country whose agenda is sustainable exploitation of natural resources aimed at creating lasting value for society, adding that, although Uganda’s oil journey has been quite long starting from 2006, the period has been constructively used to map out a critical path for commercialization of petroleum reserves.
He said government dedicated the period to solving oil discovery related challenges and immense gaps such as skills, infrastructure, legal and institutional frameworks among others, in the country
“As a country, our primary focus was on ensuring that the journey towards first Oil was one that would bring in maximum benefit to the country, by ensuring that the oil and gas resources are produced efficiently and that Ugandans could competitively participate through the provision of goods and services,” President Museveni said.
His Excellency also elaborated that the government embarked on a massive campaign to train personnel in different fields along the entire petroleum value chain, and have since taken charge, negotiated agreements on behalf of the country hence continuously driving the sector to commercialization.
He added that the government continues to equip Uganda Petroleum Institute at Kigumba, to produce internationally certified skills for the oil and gas sector.
President Museveni said an enabling legal framework to govern the sector in terms of upstream, midstream and downstream has been created while the traditional institutions like NEMA, URA, UWA, among others have been strengthened to support the oil and gas sector.
“The local content policy was developed and approved. Regulations for the Oil laws are in place and agreed to by the stakeholders. Over 26 goods and services have been earmarked as a preserve of the Ugandans and Ugandan companies,” Museveni said.
The President called upon the private sector to prepare to utilize the opportunities that will accrue from the exploitation of petroleum resources.
The Minister of state for minerals, Peter Lokeris said Government will continue to support the oil and Gas sector and endeavour to ensure that all citizens participate and benefit it.
The keynote speaker at the convention, Akim Bello Osagie, who is the Chairman of Metis Capital partners in Nigeria, called upon the key stakeholders in the oil and gas sector to pay critical attention to leadership, expertise, competition, involvement & engagement of local communities and use of local content in the industry.
The convention was attended by Ambassadors, Politicians and government officials among others.
Thursday, April 11, 2019