Uganda, Kenya officials to meet, Tanzania sets pipeline schedule

Move deals blow to Kenya, which was trying to divert course of the project to go via Turkana

Tuesday March 15 2016

Workers put final touches on the Western Kenya Pipeline Extension Project before it is laid down at Cheplaskei in Eldoret Town on September 15, 2010. PHOTO | JARED NYATAYA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Workers put final touches on the Western Kenya Pipeline Extension Project before it is laid down at Cheplaskei in Eldoret Town on September 15, 2010. PHOTO | JARED NYATAYA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By LILIAN OCHIENG'
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Construction of the Tanzania-Uganda crude oil pipeline begins in August and will be complete in two years, even as Kenya negotiates to have the pipeline go north through Lamu.

The executive director of Tanzania’s Petroleum Development Corporation, Mr James Mataragio, said in a statement that construction of the $4 billion project will be carried out by UK’s Tullow Oil Plc, France’s Total E&P and China’s Cnooc.

“It is anticipated that over 200,000 tonnes of bare pipes, materials and equipment such as pipe insulation, pump, bulk heating and trace heating stations will be imported through Tanga port,” Mr Mataragio is quoted as saying by Tanzania’s publication The Citizen.

ADDRESS CONCERN

Kenya’s Petroleum Principal Secretary Andrew Kamau last week said energy officials in Uganda and Kenya were meeting this week to address concerns on security for the proposed pipeline.

Other key points of the discussions are the pipeline’s funding, the lowest cost tariff to be applied and how to tackle possible insecurity issues.

Uganda last year signed an MoU with Kenya to have the pipeline constructed through Hoima-Lokichar-Lamu.

However Total, one of the investors in Uganda’s oil, has constantly pushed to have the pipeline go through Tanga.

This led to a similar MoU between Uganda and Tanzania to begin a study that would see the pipeline take the southern route.

Developments on the talks have since been heightened, with Tanzania announcing the construction dates for its shared pipeline.

Uganda’s major constraint is lack of finances for construction of the line, this compels the country to partner with either Tanzania or Kenya to push it through.

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