Uganda Oil And Gas Profile
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  • Uganda is a land locked country in East Africa with Kenya to the East, Tanzania to the South, Rwanda to the South West, Democratic Republic of Congo to the west and Sudan to the North. The cost of petroleum products constitutes over 15% of the country’s total import bill and these products are mainly imported through the port of Mombasa in Kenya, a distance of 1300km from the capital city Kampala.
  • Although there is currently no oil and gas production, commercial reserves have been proven and a number of international companies are working on bringing production on stream
  • New infrastructure is needed to transport the oil to international markets.


  • 1985 - Original Petroleum law passed
  • 1997 - Heritage became the first oil and gas company in almost 60 years to undertake exploration in Uganda
  • 2000 - Petroleum (Exploration and Production) Act passed
  • 2006 - Confirmation of the existence of commercial reserves of oil


  • Ownership and control of minerals and petroleum in, on or under any land or waters in the country is vested in the Government by Article 244 of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda, 1995. The Constitution empowers parliament to make laws regulating the exploration and exploitation of minerals and petroleum, the management of accruing revenues, payment of indemnities, and the conditions for the restoration of derelict lands.
  • This mandate together with the Petroleum (Exploration and Production) Act, Chapter 150 of the Laws of Uganda, 2000 and the Petroleum (Exploration and Production) (Conduct of Exploration Operations) Regulations, 1993 provide the legal and regulatory framework under which the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development through the Petroleum Exploration and Production Department (PEPD), has promoted and regulated the exploration of oil and gas in the country.


  • Petroleum occurrence was first recorded in Uganda in the early 1920’s. One deep well was drilled in 1938 which encountered some hydrocarbon shows but was not tested. Several shallow wells were also drilled during the 1940’s and 1950’s for stratigraphic purposes.
  • There was then a period of limited or no activity between 1940 and 1980 largely due to the Second World War and political instability in the country. A modern and consistent effort to establish the country’s petroleum potential has been undertaken since the 1980s.
  • Aeromagnetic surveys undertaken during 1983 and 1992 respectively identified five sedimentary basins in the country. These are; the Albertine Graben, Lake Kyoga Basin, Hoima Basin, Lake Wamala Basin and Moroto-Kadam Basin.
  • The Lake Albert basin is one of the most important African sedimentary basins, having resources for more than 1 billion barrels of oil equivalent

Active Companies

  • Tullow and Heritage have been partners on the Kingfisher Oil Field but Heritage later sold out
  • Total and CNOOC farmed into Tullow's Kanywataba license and the Kingfisher production licence in 2012

Crude Oils

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  • There are no LNG terminals or projects in Uganda


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