Museveni gave the example of synthetic vehicle tyres, car seats and other furnishing, clothing and bitumen for road construction among others, adding that it is how oil is applied which is the issue, but not production of the resource.
The East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) Bill is due for conclusion in parliament on Tuesday and this will pave the way for the several activities including starting construction, according to the Energy and Mineral Development Ministry.
The private sector, specifically those in businesses
relating to the oil and gas industry want the governments of Uganda and
Tanzania to lift some of their national laws that might hinder companies from taking advantages, especially across the border.
This is mainly in regard to projects that companies in
Uganda may want to undertake in Tanzania and vice-versa for the Tanzanian investors.
Currently, while the two countries have tried to introduce
some harmonized policies regarding the industry, the private sector say there
are still some areas where it is difficult for them to cross borders.
Patrick Mweheire, the Chairman of the Uganda Chamber of
Mines and Petroleum gives the example of Tanzania’s view of local companies,
where for one to be considered so, there must be a 25 percent local ownership.
In Uganda, the Local Content Policy provides for companies
started and registered in the names of Ugandans, and some products and services
in the oil and gas industry have been ring-fenced for them.
The other services are free to be competed for by any
Speaking at the Tanzania-Uganda Oil and Gas Symposium in Dar
es Salaam, Mweheire asked that such barriers should be lifted for at least
three years to help the private businesses in the two countries to take advantage
of the available opportunities.
//Cue in: “To be considered…'//
Cue out: …a lot of time.”//
This came after Uganda’s Minister for Energy and Mineral Development,
Ruth Nankabirwa stressed that investors from either of the two countries will be
treated as local companies, a stand repeated by her Tanzanian counterparts.
She, however, asked the investors from the two countries to
form cross-border joint ventures which will help share experiences and in mobilizing resources.
She revealed that the East African Crude Oil Pipeline
(EACOP) Bill is due for conclusion in parliament on Tuesday and this will pave
the way for several activities including starting construction.
//Cue in: “More Specifically….'//
Cue out: …be interrupted.”//
The EACOP is among the last steps towards the
development of oil and gas, and the Bill is aimed at domesticating the
already signed agreements by the two countries before the company commences
“The law will kickstart the commercialization of Uganda’s
oil and gas resources and facilitate the upstream partners to take the
long-awaited Final Investment Decision and the development of the
Petroleum sector,” the Attorney General Kiryowa Kiwanuka said recently.
Mweheire, who is also the Regional Chief Executive of Stanbic
Bank East Africa asked the governments to step up efforts aimed at empowering the
local companies to take up opportunities that may otherwise be grabbed by
//Cue in: “This complex…'//
Cue out: …same journey.”//
In response, President Yoweri Museveni reasoned that the financial
sector should focus on economically empowering the local citizens so that when
opportunities come up, they do not have to look for emergency solutions.
He says for example, if Ugandans had better incomes, at the
start of the oil and gas sector, it would be easy for them to be involved.
//Cue in: “What he is…'//
Cue out: …the limit.”//
On the global campaign against financing the oil and gas
products, President Museveni said the industry should not be afraid of the future
importance of the commodity.
The developed world is leading the transition to electric
vehicles and some cities have given deadlines of between five and 10 years to
have eradicated petroleum-powered vehicles off their streets.
This is causing discomfort to the younger and prospective
petroleum-producing countries like Uganda about the value of oil.
However, President Museveni says even if the use of petroleum
to power vehicles ends in a few years, the commodity will still be required for
many uses including in the motor industry.
He gave the example of synthetic vehicle tyres, car seats
and another furnishing, clothing, bitumen for road construction among others,
adding that it is how oil is applied which is the issue, but not the production of the
//Cue in: “First of
Cue out: durable business.”//
Museveni says empowering
people economically solves many problems including the issue of the market.
Referring to the trade wars between the East African countries,
the President said for example, Ugandans are poor consumers of milk and the
country finds itself with excess supply.
He also attacked his ministers especially in Finance,
Planning and Economic Development for failing to help the sugar industry to
diversify to products like industrial sugar instead of quarreling with
neighbouring countries over the market.