According to the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum, the search for the builder of the 1300km pipeline running from Uganda’s Hoima region through Lokichar in Turkana all the way to the Kenyan coast will commence in six months.This follows the completion of the feasibility studies by Toyota Shusho in a contract funded by Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda. Toyota Tshusho won against a consortium of companies including one by Tullow Oil and its partner Africa Oil.
The firm will also supervise the construction of fibre optic cables from Uganda’s oil fields in Hoima-Lokichar basin in Northwest Kenya, where the country has found oil deposits, to Kenya’s proposed LAPSSET Corridor, which starts from Juba in Southern Sudan through Lokichar and Moyale to the Lamu port.
“Feasibility studies for a crude oil pipeline running from Hoima in Uganda through Lokichar to Lamu have been completed. Request for proposals for the construction of the pipeline will be issued by third and fourth quarter,” said Oil News Kenya, citing the East African.
Kenya which hopes to see its first exports in three years, hopes that it’s discovered recoverable crude oil reserves currently estimated at 600 million barrels will surpass one billion barrels once appraisal well drilling is complete. This will enable a pipeline carrying its own crude economically viable even without Uganda’s 6.5 billion barrels.
Besides the pipeline, the builder will also be tasked with building tank terminals as well as mooring buoys offshore Lamu.
In October 2014, the World Bank and international institutions pledged to support infrastructure projects including the development of oil and gas pipelines across all eight countries in the Horn of Africa including Kenya.
Kenya is positioning itself as an important player in transport and infrastructure sector with its wide investment in mega projects such as the standard gauge railway, roads, port and pipeline as it competes among other East African countries.