Tanzania Energy Minister Says DR Congo and Burundi Want to Join Uganda Pipeline Project

Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Burundi expressed interest to join the Uganda-Tanzania Oil Pipeline project, a Tanzanian official said

Tanzania Minister for Energy and Minerals, Prof Sospeter Muhongo, made the revelation in Dar es Salaam while opening a one-day meeting of ministerial Permanent Secretaries and Regional Commissioners from areas expected to be affected by the pipeline project.

Muhongo said he was expecting to  meet with officials  from DR Congo to discuss in detail how best the country can get involved in the project.

He said Burundi is also expected to use the pipeline, noting that the move by both countries will make the project an outstanding regional oil and gas infrastructure.

Uganda announced in April, 2016 that it had decided to route its Crude oil Southwards from the albertine basin to Tanzania’s port of Northeastern Port of Tanga as opposed to an earlier proposal to Kenya. The project is estimated at $4 billion.

Muhongo said the 1,410 Kilometer pipeline would also be used to transport oil from South Sudan.

“The pipeline would be useful in the course of transporting oil from Lake Tanganyika if the search for oil in the lake is successful,” he said.

Officials from Uganda and Tanzania are set to meet in October 2016 to review progress on outstanding issues about the project including land acquisition and Inter-government Agreement on the project.

In the Previous meeting, a ministreial committe from both nations considered a report of the Project Steering Committee on the Crude Oil Pipeline, which focused on four areas: Name and Logo of the Pipeline; Fiscal framework; Size of the pipeline corridor, and; Set of time-bound actions

On the set of timely-bound actions, the Ministerial Meeting agreed to develop a project schedule and workout modalities to expedite all necessary approvals, including land access, environmental and societal aspects, routing, project agreements and other activities requiring national or Local Government consents.

Muhongo sounded a strong warning to residents against encroaching on the land allocated for the project in search for state compensation.

“Those intending to invade should immediately stop as they would lose their money putting up houses and other infrastructure on land that would be used to construct the pipeline,” he said.

He said research satellites would be used to establish those who would have invaded the construction lane land ahead of August, last year. “Those who will be found to have invaded the areas after August, last year – the start of the pipeline construction deal – will not be compensated,” he said.

With Files from Daily News

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