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Oil and Gas is a Matter of ‘Life and Death’-Kasaija


The oil drilling rig LR80001 at the Kingfisher Development area-KFDA being operated by CNOOC Uganda Limited. PHOTO URN

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Matia Kasaija, the Minister of Finance, Planning, and Economic Development has underscored the importance of Uganda’s oil and gas exploration, emphasizing an unwavering commitment to the project’s seamless progression.

During a visit to the Kingfisher Development Area (KFDA) in Buhuka village, Kyangwali sub-county in Kikuube district on Tuesday evening, Kasaija reasserted the government’s dedication to ensuring the inaugural oil drop by the targeted year of 2025.

Kasaija cautioned against any attempts to obstruct the country’s oil development endeavors, urging collective efforts and cooperation to achieve this significant milestone.

“We shall not allow anybody or country to sabotage the progress of our oil activities. We can get money from any way we want to facilitate the development of the oil and gas in Uganda,“ said Kasaija. He emphasized the unparalleled importance of the oil and gas sector, stressing that, unlike other projects, it would be shielded from any form of interference.

Underlining environmental stewardship, Kasaija called upon oil companies to adopt environmentally friendly practices, necessitating the implementation of robust measures to safeguard ecologically sensitive areas. Additionally, he urged local communities to seize the multitude of opportunities arising from the sector, advocating investments in various industries connected to oil and gas.

The Petroleum Authority of Uganda highlighted considerable advancements in the oil and gas activities within the Albertine Graben. Notably, at the KFDA, significant progress has been made with the drilling completion of four wells out of the planned 31, with further drilling anticipated by the first quarter of the subsequent year.

Alex Nyombi, the Director for Development and Production at the Petroleum Authority of Uganda-PAU, says the oil and gas activities in the Albertine Graben are moving on well. He said at the Kingfisher Oil Development area, they have finished the drilling of 4 wells out of the 31 that are going to be used to produce oil over the 25 years for the project.

The KFDA Project aims to attain a peak daily oil production of 40,000 barrels, featuring essential infrastructure such as a Central Processing Facility at Buhuka Flats and other ancillary installations. CNOOC Uganda Limited’s declaration of the Final Investment Decision (FID) for the KFDA and LA2 South development in February 2022 marks a significant stride in the construction of pipelines and associated infrastructure.

However, the progress of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) faced a setback following the September 2022 resolution of the EU Parliament, suspending operations for a year. The suspension was attributed to alleged human rights violations and environmental concerns in Uganda and Tanzania. The resolution emphasized the need for fair compensation for affected individuals, cessation of extractive activities in protected ecosystems, and a halt to proposed drilling in environmentally sensitive areas.

The 1,443km crude oil export pipeline, traversing from Hoima, Uganda, to Tanga, Tanzania, is under scrutiny regarding its environmental impact and treatment of affected communities, prompting a temporary pause in its advancement.

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