EACOP project to be given five-year construction license

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The east African crude oil pipeline will get a five-year construction license, according to a source, putting its expected completion date in 2027, beyond the 2024 – 2025 First Oil timeline.

The source however clarified that it does not necessarily affect the First Oil timeline as the pipeline could be completed within three years.

Further clarifying, JB Habumugisha, the deputy managing director of the National Pipeline Company, said the license will last for the construction period “which can be three years or more.”

“The pipeline will be ready in time for First Oil. First Oil is an outcome it is not a fixed date. When you produce oil and have all the infrastructure what is called First Oil is that first barrel you sell,” Habumugisha said when asked whether the construction timeline would not affect that of First Oil.

The Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development last Friday received an application for the construction license from the EACOP team led by the managing director, Martin Tiffen at the ministry headquarters.

Honey Malinga, the Acting Director of petroleum at the ministry, notified in a statement that the license would be processed in six months.

Tiffen said all was set for the work to commence, according to the ministry statement.

Since the announcement of the Final Investment Decision of the Lake Albert Oil Development Project on February 1 this year where the International Oil Companies committed a $20 billion investment during a televised event in Kampala, developments in the sector are coming in thick and fast.

The announcement came after the signing of key agreements governing operation of the EACOP, including the crucial Host Government Agreement which was signed in 2021, paving way for the masterpiece project.

The participating partners on the project are TotalEnergies, the lead developer on the $4 billion project with a 62% stake; CNOOC Uganda with 8%, the Uganda National Oil Company (UNOC) with 15%, and the Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC) with 15%.

Land acquisition for the project is in advanced stages to secure 172 acres for construction camps; 2,745 acres for the pipeline Right of Way (RoW) and orphan land; and 182 acres for feeder roads.


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