By Sultani Kipingo
Tanzanians are happy with the implementation speed of the proposed construction of the Tanzania-Uganda crude oil pipeline which is expected to start in August this year, and will be completed in 2019.
Many of those interviewed expressed gratitude to President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni of Uganda and his Tanzanian counterpart Dr. John Pombe Joseph Magufuli for initiating the 4-billion-U.S. dollar oil pipeline project that is expected to hasten socio-economic development between the two nations.
“We are overwhelmed by the rapidity of the project considering only two weeks have passed since Presidents Museveni and Dr. Magufuli jointly approved the project when they met in Arusha.
“It is unbelievable to note that officials from both sides have this week signed the agreement and come August the construction work takes off”, said Ms Natala Kimaro of Moshi.
Amani Abdallah of Tanga said that the 1,403-kilometer pipeline that will link oil fields in Uganda’s Lake Albert, Hoima region to Tanga port in Tanzania is testimony to true East African integration spirit, hoping more such projects would be initiated.
The construction of the crude oil pipeline will be carried out by three oil firms–UK’s Tullow Oil PLC, France’s Total E&P and China’s Cnooc. Once completed, the pipeline is expected to transport up to 200,000 barrels per day passing through a number of Tanzanian regions from the Indian Ocean port of Tanga to Uganda.
The construction will lead to installations of 200km of permanent new roads and corresponding bridges, and upgrades to 150km of existing roads, opening up regional integration in the energy sub-sector.
Tanzanians are also happy that that the crude oil pipeline project will also increase foreign Direct Investment by more than 50 percent per annum, let alone creating over 15,000 jobs.
Tanzania President Dr. John Pombe Joseph Magufuli announces the crude oil pipeline project to reporters after his meeting with President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni of Uganda on March 1, 2013 in Arusha in the sidelines of the The 17th Ordinary East African Community (EAC) Heads of State Summit
Tanzania's Minister for Energy and Minerals Prof. Sospeter Muhongo (second left) and Uganda's Minister for Energy and Minerals Development Engineer Irene Muloni ( wa tatu right), with the Managing Director of the Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC) Dr. James Mataragio (left) and the General Manager of Total E&P Uganda, Mr Adewale Fayemi (second right) sign the crude oil pipeline project implementation plan in Arusha on March 17, 2016. Seated extreme right is Permanent Secretary Ministry of Energy and Minerals Development of Uganda Dkt. Kabagambe Kaliisa
Map of the proposed crude oil pipeline project