Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Uganda needs to up to USD 20 billion (7.4 trillion Shillings) to achieve its first oil by 2021, according to the Energy Ministry Permanent Secretary Robert Kasande. The money according to Kasande will cater for upstream developments which include Central Processing Facilities (CPFs) and pipelines which require access roads.
Kasande was speaking at an update meeting for selected Members of Parliament on the status of oil production in the country conducted by the Ministry of Energy together with the Petroleum Authority of Uganda at Lake Victoria Serena, Kigo.
The MPs were selected from different committees of parliament. They include the Physical Infrastructure committee, Budget Committee, Natural Resources Committee and Human Rights Committee, among others. The meeting was also attended by different ministers and Permanent Secretaries.
“Some of these areas are pretty rural, the pipeline largely follows a straight line and we need to cross. We are cutting through the bushes so we need that access. Land acquisition is a challenge, people need to understand that this infrastructure needs this access,” Kasande explained.
He added that they are also working on a 60,000 barrel per day Uganda Refinery Project as well as the Africa Crude Oil Pipeline and support towards infrastructure development like construction of Airport in Kabaale.
He added that it is important for the country to prepare and position itself to benefit from its own resources.
Uganda currently has 21 gas discoveries of which 14 fields under development. Kasande explains that the government estimates to produce 1.4 billion barrels.
State Minister for Trade Michael Werikhe advised the Energy Ministry to adapt technology that can increase the output of the 4.6 billion barrels that is likely to be left underground so as to increase the output.
Meanwhile, Col. Paddy Ankunda who represented the Defence Minister Adolf Mwesige tasked the Energy Ministry and the Petroleum Authority of Uganda to come up with mechanisms to combat cyber-attacks especially on the computers used for the oil business.
Kasande said that the energy industry requires very high safety measures and that the Ministry is in the discussion for the establishment of the safety authority or unit in the ministry of labour. He called on MPs to sensitize the electorate against attempts to cash on one jerrycan of oil, while ignoring the implications, saying there is a need for the public to respect public facilities.