Pontem Analytics at Uganda International Oil & Gas Summit
Sponsored, Exhibited, and Presented
The 8th edition of the Uganda International Oil & Gas Summit, held at Serena Hotel Kampala, served as a platform to discuss exciting opportunities in the East African energy market. Opened by Her Excellency, the Prime Minister of Uganda, Robinah Nabbanja (on behalf of President Yoweri Museveni), the summit began on a high note with the Honorable Minister of Energy and Mineral Development, Ruth Nankabirwa, encouraging investment in Uganda's oil and gas industry. She highlighted the strides made by the development of the Kingfisher and Tilenga fields, operated by CNOOC and Total, respectively, and emphasized the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) as a catalyst to explore more fossil fuels in the East African Region.
Before recapping Pontem Analytics’ experience at the just concluded Uganda International Oil & Gas Summit, it is important to be upfront about the key takeaways from the event.
So let us be very clear with ourselves, let us be intentional, let us understand that oil and gas is here for Africa, and we need oil and gas to help us shoe our industrial revolution.
Uganda is poised to lead East Africa by producing over 240,000 barrels of oil per day from flagship developments Tilenga and Kingfisher, accompanied by the EACOP pipeline running from Uganda to Tanzania.
There are opportunities for service and consulting companies to partner with local companies, in line with Uganda’s local content laws, to provide design, maintenance and operations services to the three major ongoing projects in the country. There is also a requirement for local capacity building. The opportunities also extend to those who wish to explore more oil and gas prospects.
East Africa is encouraging investments in the energy sector and using key infrastructure such as the EACOP pipeline and new airport in Uganda to attract new oil and gas prospectors. EACOP will make it possible for smaller operators in East African countries to tie into the existing inter-country trunkline. This also makes metering and allocation a very important topic in the East African market. With shared transportation facilities, there is need for accurate metering and effective allocation methods.
Notably, the East African energy industry exhibits diversity, with women holding key and influential positions in both government and industry. This progress is particularly significant in a traditionally male-dominated sector such as oil and gas.
The 8th Uganda International Oil & Gas Summit Recap
Pontem Analytics sponsored the Summit alongside TotalEnergies, CNOOC, EACOP, Petroleum Authority of Uganda, and the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development, among others.
Pontem Analytics was also one of the exhibitors at the event, speaking with different organizations about how data analytics can be used to advance energy access in the region.
The event hosted several topical panel discussions ranging from local content, "diversity, equality & inclusion," the EACOP project, investment opportunities in Rwanda, and powering Uganda with a diverse energy mix.
Key Summit Sessions:
1. Local Content Session: Former Managing Director of Tullow Oil, Jimmy Mugerwa, facilitated the session on local content, with panelists discussing local content success stories from Uganda and across the continent. Other panelists included Nicolas Odinuwe, Chairman of the Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria, and Elizabeth Rogo, a Board Member of the National Oil Corporation of Kenya, who shared experiences of local content practices in their respective countries. Also present was the National Content Officer of Uganda National Oil Company.
Opportunities abound for foreign organizations to collaborate with local companies to provide services for the country's major projects, with a crucial emphasis on local capacity building and potential for further oil and gas development.
2. Diversity, Equality & Inclusion: A striking observation at the conference was the significant number of women in key positions across the East African energy industry and political class. The list of women in attendance at the Summit includes: the prime minister of Uganda, the minister of energy & mineral development, head of exploration and new ventures Uganda National Oil Company (UNOC), CEO of UNOC, acting CEO PetroSA, CEO MTN Uganda, permanent secretary Uganda ministry of trade industries and cooperative (MTIC), permanent secretary of energy & mineral production, director of economic & national content monitoring, PAU and Head of Human Resources CNOOC Uganda, etc.
The panel discussed Uganda's evolving landscape, acknowledging the historical male domination in the oil and gas industry at all levels. While recognizing progress, they discussed challenges and areas for improvement.
East African governments are championing the empowerment of women in both the energy and business sectors, fostering their active participation in energy-related activities to ensure their success in the region's burgeoning energy industry.
3. Power Uganda: Pontem Analytics’ Temitope Solanke strongly rebuked those opposing Africa’s energy/fossil fuels development and advocated for an all-of-the-above energy solution to eradicate energy poverty in Africa.
I dare say, let Africa develop its resources and eliminate energy poverty. And when I say eliminate energy poverty by way of fossil fuels, I'm not here to advocate that we should not deal with renewable. I believe in an all-inclusive, all-of-the-above approach to energy access and sources.
Chaired by Dr Frank Ssebowa, the session emphasized the need for the inclusion of fossil fuels in Uganda’s energy mix. Temitope asserted that energy poverty is poverty and emphasized the importance of energy access in elevating nations out of poverty, using the United States as an example.
The United States of America - they were an embattled nation. Within 100 years of getting access to energy, look at how they became a superpower. And we can go on and on about different countries who have passed through this similar phase.
All panelists agreed on the necessity of development before achieving sustainability. While energy transition is crucial for combating climate change, Africa cannot transition from energy poverty to deepened energy poverty. Temitope speaks passionately, in the video below, about the need to develop Africa’s oil and gas to accelerate Africa’s industrial revolution.
Development of Africa’s oil and gas resources will enable a transition to cleaner and more sustainable energy sources. Temitope emphasized the human perspective of energy, focusing on the everyday lives of people.
We need to fight for energy, we need to make our voices heard and look at things from a human standpoint. At times when we talk about energy, it is from an industrial standpoint, which makes the key story lost. This is how I want to look at energy: I want to look at the woman in the rural part of Uganda or village who’s got children and wants her children to have a good future…that woman needs electricity for her children to participate in the educational system. That woman cooks with charcoal and firewood, so just imagine the emissions she is facing in her own house. Energy is about life; energy access is about human lives.
He also buttressed his point with the increase in life expectancy in USA as a result of improved clean water, healthcare, powered by energy access, correlating energy access to (quality of) human lives.
From an industrial perspective, Temitope lauded the EACOP project as a miracle to East Africa, as it’s created opportunities for smaller nations in the region who wouldn’t have considered hydrocarbons exploration because of lack of transport infrastructure to engage in oil and gas activities. Different oil fields in the region can tie into the pipeline infrastructure and have access to markets.
4. Special Focus on the EACOP Project: The East African Crude Oil Pipeline Project, a 24-inch, 1,443km pipeline, will transport oil from Uganda’s Lake Albert oilfields (Tilenga and Kingfisher fields) to the port of Tanga in Tanzania for global markets.
The EACOP team had the opportunity to correct misinformation spread by some foreign climate change activists attempting to derail the project through propaganda.
Until lion tells its own side of the story, the tale of the hunt will only glorify the hunter.
Professor Chinua Achebe
The hunter in this context are the activists who will concoct falsities to derail oil and gas projects that pose to provide development to an energy starved region.
The pipeline, as shown below, transports oil from Kabaale-Hoima in Uganda to Tanga in Tanzania, at the beach of the Indian Ocean, where it can be transported to other end markets.
The East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) spans 296 km in Uganda and 1147 km in Tanzania, featuring a buried 24" insulated pipeline. Positioned one meter below the surface, it allows free passage for people, animals, and infrastructure crossings. Given Uganda's crude oil characteristics, the pipeline maintains oil temperature above 50 degrees Celsius. In case of shutdown, an electrical trace heating system, with electricity sourced from hydro-electric power (Uganda side) and solar (Tanzania side), can warm the oil. Additionally, the EACOP facilitates increased fibre optic cable capacities for third parties, enhancing internet connections in Uganda and Tanzania.
According to the speakers, EACOP fully recognizes its responsibilities both to environmental protection and the people, land and communities that will be impacted by the project, especially during the construction phase.
EACOP is a miracle to East Africa; it encourages smaller operators and governments in the region to explore, produce oil & gas and tie into their trunkline.
The conference revealed vast opportunities in Uganda's energy sector, sparking a keen interest in collaborating with international organizations to bolster local companies, fostering industry growth, and enhancing local capacity.
The dynamic energy sector in Uganda and East Africa offers promising prospects for Pontem Analytics. Operating from our Rwanda office, we are set to deliver top-notch engineering consultancy services to energy projects in the region. As we embark on this journey, we eagerly anticipate the exciting opportunities unfolding in the region, especially at its nascent stage.
Pontem Analytics has joined the chorus advocating for the enlightenment of Africa's journey from energy poverty to energy prosperity. Among the various strategies to enhance energy access, Pontem Analytics positions itself as a reliable partner to energy, oil, and gas producers in the region. Our focus lies in the domain of production assurance, ensuring seamless operation of production systems without interruptions to the flow of oil and gas. Additionally, we leverage advanced data analytics to optimize production processes, contributing to the sustainable advancement of the energy sector.
We are not just consultants; we are partners in East Africa’s efforts to provide energy access and eradicate energy poverty. Along with the governments, we are also investing in local capacity building and partnering with educational institutions to provide skills required for the developing energy industry in the region.
Below is basic information about the two major oil and gas developments in Uganda.
Tilenga Oil Field
Situated in the Buliisa and Nwoya districts within the Lake Albert region, the Tilenga Project, overseen by TotalEnergies EP Uganda, encompasses three Production Licenses (PLs) from Contract Area-1 (Jobi-Rii, Gunya, and Ngiri) and three PLs from License Area-2 (Kasamene-Wahrindi, Kigogole-Ngara, and Nsoga).
The name "Tilenga" is derived from the local names for the Uganda Kob, represented as TIL in Luo and ENGAbi in Lugungu.
Operated by TotalEnergies with a majority stake of 56.67%, the project is undertaken in collaboration with CNOOC (28.33%) and UNOC (15%). The anticipated production capacity for Tilenga and Kingfisher is set to reach 230,000 barrels of oil per day at plateau levels. Over a span of at least 20 years, Tilenga and Kingfisher are projected to yield an estimated 1.4 billion barrels of crude oil. The project involves the development of six fields and the drilling of approximately 400 wells from 31 locations.
Kingfisher Oil Field
Located in the Southeast of Lake Albert, the Kingfisher Development Area (KFDA) stands as a pivotal oil and gas project in Uganda. Named after the fish-eating bird, the Kingfisher, abundant in the region, the area is situated in Buhuka "flat," specifically in Kyangwaali, Kikuube district.
UNOC, serving as the Government nominee, possesses a 15% participating interest in the project. The project's partners include CNOOC Uganda Limited (the operator) and TotalEnergies EP Uganda, holding 28.33% and 56.67%, respectively.
KFDA encompasses the Kingfisher field situated in Kikuube, with future plans for tie-ins of the Mputa-Nzizi-Waraga fields in Kaiso-Tonya, Hoima District.
During peak production, the project is anticipated to produce 40,000 barrels of crude oil per day. Key infrastructure for KFDA comprises:
- Development of a Central Processing Facility (CPF) with a capacity of 40,000 barrels of oil per day.
- Drilling of thirty-one (31) wells (11 injectors and 20 producers) on four (4) well pads.
- Installation of nineteen (19) kilometers of flowlines connecting the fields to the CPF.
- Construction of a forty-six (46) kilometer 12-inch feeder pipeline from the CPF in Buhuka to the export hub and refinery in Kabaale, Hoima District.
- Establishment of a Lake Water Abstraction station.
- Provision of supporting infrastructure, including temporary and permanent camps, a materials yard, a jetty, and various access road, among other facilities.