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Oil and gas sector faces huge truck driver deficit :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Oil and gas sector faces huge truck driver deficit

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Qualified heavy goods vehicle drivers have been identified as a key human resource for transporting large quantities of raw materials, raw material and works in progress.
20 Mar 2020 09:29
Dr. Mary Gorreti Kitutu, the Minister of Energy and Mineral Development. Her Minsitry has to work with other agencies to fill the skills gap in the tranport and logistics

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What if the oil and gas joint venture partners decided to begin oil production in the coming months, is the transportation sector in Uganda able to provide qualified truck drivers? The answer is no according to players in the transport and logistics sector.

It is emerging that if the current slowdown in the oil and gas activities was unlocked, the country may not be able to provide competently trained heavy duty truck drivers to deliver construction materials in the Albertine Graben’s King Fisher, Tilenga and the east African crude oil pipeline projects.

Qualified heavy goods vehicle drivers have been identified as a key human resource for transporting large quantities of raw materials, raw material and works in progress.

Data from Petroleum Authority as well as International Oil Companies, indicates that the number of heavy goods drivers may not adequate to the demand arising from the development of the King Fisher, East African Crude Oil Pipeline and Tilenga projects in the Albertine.

Safeway Rightway is one of the private sector players involved in training Heavy good Vehicles driver for the oil and gas sector acknowledges that many of the drivers on the job market may not meet the industry requirements.

Safeway Rightway Chief Executive officer, Peter Tibagambwa Rubashumiraestimates that 2,500 Heavy Goods Vehicle Drivers will be required for the Tilenga, Kingfisher Development Area (KFDA) & East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP).

He says it is not easy to train a driver to the level that they meet the regional and oil and gas standards for heavy goods trucks.

//// Cue In “Because there is a standard…..

Cue Out” …. and have had certification before /////

It is highlighted that during the construction, there will be a lot of machines need during the construction phase. All those will require some specialized driver or operators. Recent estimate indicates that about 1200 direct machine operators to the indirect ones like supervisors.

Bollore Transport and logistics is one of the major freight forwarders in Uganda. Its managing Director, Oliver Wells says one of the challenges faced with driver training institution in Uganda is the lack of funding for instructors and driving equipment.

He says most of the driver on the market may not meet the required certification and standards  for generally the freight industry and now the oil and gas sector.

////Cue In “ There are about 100,000…….

Cue Out…. ready for this project”//// 

He admits that generally, the country does yet not have enough professionally skilled workers whose qualifications meet internationally recognized standards. 

In 2015, Mott MacDonald the consultancy study titled “Capacity Needs Analysis for Oil and Gas Sector Skills in Uganda” found that the main impediment to employing a larger share of Ugandans in the sector is a shortage of personnel with adequate practical experience and skills.

It found that some of the drivers on the market have never attended a driver training, while others had had some form of training but it only theoretical leaving room for potential disaster.

According to the study, over 1800 professional drivers of large commercial vehicles will be required  in this sector over the next 10 years. The oil and gas transportation is a very sensitive issue for heavy vehicle drivers from centralized plants to the end users.