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    EITI Board suspends DRC

    The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) Board suspended the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) mid this month following concerns that it was not fully disclosing financial information and the disclosed financial figures were not reliable.

    EITI is an international initiative that operates on the principle that companies working in the extractives sector of member countries must publicly disclose payments they make to governments and governments disclose whatever revenues they receive from those companies. Read More

  • CNOOC logo

    CNOOC in record-breaking Canadian acquisition

    The China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) announced on Tuesday that it had acquired Canada’s loss-making Nexen Inc., at a price of about 15 billion dollars.

    This is the largest overseas acquisition ever made by a Chinese company, as China seeks to deepen its footprint in developed countries.

    According to Xinhua News Agency, China’s three major energy companies-China Petrochemical Corporation (Sinopec), China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) and CNOOC – closed acquisition deals overseas worth a total of $25.4 billion in 2012. Read More

  • A signpost at the entrance  of a school built by Heritage Oil and Gas in Buhukya, Hoima District in the area that hosts the Kingfisher Oil wells

    Green light: President assents to upstream law, Heritage Oil vows to fight on

    A sign at the entrance of a primary school built by Heritage Oil and Gas in Buhuka, Hoima District in the area that hosts the Kingfisher Oil wells (Photo:CM)

    Uganda’s oil industry received two belated Easter presents this week that, according to government officials, place the country on a solid path towards oil production.

    Amidst jubilation following Uganda’s reported victory in the tax arbitration case against Heritage Oil and Gas in London on Wednesday; junior Minerals Minister, Peter Lokeris, revealed that President Yoweri Museveni had finally signed the Petroleum (Exploration, Development, Production) 2012 Bill, into law. Read More

  • Oil Truck

    South Sudan plans to truck its oil exports, agrees to resume production next week

    Mr. Philip Ajack Boldit

    South Sudan is urgently working on an alternative route to get its crude oil to markets by road, in the short term, if the agreement it signed last week in Addis Ababa with its Northern counterpart collapses again.

    The two countries agreed that South Sudan would resume production by March 24, 2013, following months of back and forth negotiations.

    South Sudan suspended oil production in January last year, accusing the North of charging exorbitant pipeline transit fees. The two sides signed an agreement last September, for Juba to resume exports through Sudan, but disagreements over border security issues delayed its implementation. Read More

  • Rtd.Bishop Baker Ocholla

    Corruption a major concern as transparency conference opens in Kampala

    Rtd.Bishop Baker Ocholla (Photo: CM)

    Ugandan delegates attending a two-day Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) Implementation Conference in Kampala have expressed their worry over government’s apparent reluctance to protect oil revenues from corrupt officials.

    Reacting to the opening speech by Uganda’s junior Minister for Finance in charge of investments, Hon. Aston Kajara, several Ugandan delegates observed that government had not instituted adequate measures to safe guard oil revenue, yet the Public Finance Bill would be tabled soon. Read More

  • Norwegian Report

    Environment is weakest link in Norwegian aid to Uganda, says report

    Seven years of ‘Oil for Development’ aid from Norway has significantly boosted the resource management capacity of Uganda’s Petroleum Exploration and Production Department (PEPD)—but environmental management lags far behind, with serious weaknesses in the National Environment Monitoring Authority (NEMA) and its partner agencies, according to a recent evaluation of the programme.

    PEPD has demonstrated “good leadership and coordination” of Norwegian aid and “effective internal organisational development,” the evaluation report observes.

    The Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development is also praised for “good leadership so far” and “good cooperation [with] subordinate institutions” on issues relating to tax and revenue management. Read More

  • Tullow Oil CEO, Aidan Heavey

    Tullow Oil releases 2012 results, quantifies Kenya discoveries

    Tullow Oil CEO, Aidan Heavey

    Tullow Oil plc this week released its 2012 full year results, portraying a strong financial performance and finally putting a figure to the commerciality of Kenya’s recent discoveries in the Lake Turkana area.

    The report also confirmed that the explorer found more oil in Uganda in December, in the Lyec-1 well at the northern end of Jobi East, but ended its year on a dour note, amidst a $ 473 million tax dispute with the Uganda government. Read More

  • Dr. Duncan Clarke (Photo:in2eastafrica)

    Norway model not the best for Uganda, says leading oil commentator

    Dr. Duncan Clarke (Photo:in2eastafrica)

    Uganda does not necessarily have to adopt the Norwegian model for it to have a sustainable oil industry, says Zimbabwean born Dr. Duncan Clarke, an author and commentator on oil issues in Africa.

    In a presentation to the 6th East African Petroleum Exhibition and Conference in Arusha last week, Dr. Clarke referred to the Norwegian model as the “advocacy NGO type model” which “constrains the growth of the natural resource.” Read More

  • Image: RVR repairs

    Working together: good idea, but hard to do

    Repairs to the railway network operated by RVR in Kenya and Uganda: a modest start to getting the region ready for oil production. (Photo: WMC Africa)

    A regional deal on oil infrastructure would likely be in the best interests of all East Africa’s players—but it doesn’t seem likely to happen, writes Chris Musiime in this special report, which will appear in our fourth print newsletter.

    With the recent oil discoveries in Kenya, confirmed commercial quantities in Uganda and prospecting under way in Somalia and Ethiopia (as well as huge gas discoveries in Tanzania, which is also prospecting for oil), some estimates indicate that East Africa could soon be producing upwards of a million barrels of oil per day. Read More

  • Tullow Oil Uganda's General Manager, Jimmy Mugerwa. Many Ugandans are going overseas to obtain qualifications to compete for jobs like his.

    Gradual development of higher-level oil training

    Tullow Oil Uganda’s General Manager, Jimmy Mugerwa. Many Ugandans are going overseas to obtain qualifications to compete for jobs like his.

    With Uganda continuing to discover more oil and slowly moving towards oil production, many top jobs in the industry will be up for grabs.

    But who is going to take up these top posts considering that few Ugandans have the qualifications needed? With an eye to future opportunities, forward-looking Ugandans have been applying to internationally recognized universities for further studies.

    In Uganda, three higher education institutions—Makerere, Nkumba, and Uganda Christian University (UCU)—now offer petroleum-related studies at some level. UCU has begun with optional courses for students studying other subjects, while Nkumba is offering a two-year diploma course and a three-year Bachleor’s degree. Makerere, ranked ninth in Africa, has key departments in Geology and Petroleum Studies and will this year offer, for the first time, a Masters degree in Petroleum Geosciences. Read More