President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and his Tanzania counterpart, John Pombe Magufuli , are expected to launch the construction of the multi-billion Hoima-Tanga crude oil pipeline this saturday, diplomatic officials have revealed.
According to The New Vision, the 11,445km oil pipieline from Hoima district in western Uganda to the Tanzania Port of Tanga, which will be constructed under the watch of Total E&P, is estimated to cost $3.5b (about 12 trillion).
Under the agreement between Uganda and Tanzania, all equipment exported for the construction of the pipeline has been exempted from taxation, for a period of three years.
Officially, Uganda has a projected 6.5 billion barrels of crude oil.Oil production is scheduled to start in 2020, with exploration having commenced in 2006.
According to officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Magufuli confirmed the Saturday oil pipeline ground-breaking ceremony on Tuesday when Ambassador Richard Kabonero Tumusiime, the new High Commissioner of Uganda to Tanzania, presented credentials to Magufuli at State House in Dar-es-Salaam.
“The President also said Kabonero has arrived at the right time when H.E Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, President of the Republic of Uganda and himself are set to launch the important project for the construction of the East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) from Hoima in Uganda to Tanga Port in Tanzania on August 5,”a statement issued yesterday by Margaret Awino Kafeero, the head of public diplomacy at the foreign affairs ministry, noted.
“This project is a lucid demonstration of the good co-operation between Uganda and Tanzania and will go a long way in providing impetus to economic growth of the two countries.”
Museveni and Magufuli signed the oil pipeline deal in May this year.During the meeting, Museveni said by working jointly on the implementation of the Hoima-Tanga crude oil pipeline, the economic fortunes of the two countries will be improved.
“Museveni welcomed the concessions offered by the United Republic of Tanzania, to ensure the success of the project, which he said will greatly improve the economy of the two countries.The two heads of state agreed to launch this project in the near future,” a joint communiqué issued by the two leaders shortly after the May agreement, stated.
The President also tasked ministers of energy and the attorney generals from both countries with signing the framework agreements for the sh 1 trillion oil pipeline projects before the end of July .The ministers completed the frameworks in June.
“President Magufuli emphasized the fact that Tanzanians and Ugandans are blood brothers with the two countries having shed blood for each other.The President, therefore, noted that the High Commissioner (Kabonero) is indeed at home and should feel free to contact him on any matter of mutual interest to the bilateral relations between the United Republic of Tanzania and the Republic of Uganda,” Awino said.