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Uganda Oil Refinery: UNOC Sends Engineers To Milan To Review Project Detail

Uganda National Oil Company [UNOC]  has sent representatives to Milan to meet the technical team from the Albertine Graben Refinery Consortium (AGRC), a congress of companies partnering to develop Uganda’s oil refinery.

UNOC says the engineers together with the project lead-investor are combing through “various studies to figure out technical issues and estimate rough investment cost of the proposed 60,000 bpd Uganda Refinery Project.”

Uganda in April 2018 signed an agreement with an international consortium of energy industry investors led by General Electric of the United States to build a long-delayed oil refinery. Other members in the consortium are (i) Yaatra Ventures LLC, (ii) Intracontinent Asset Holdings and (iii) Saipem SpA of Italy.

The refinery agreement was a relief after two previous attempts to finalize the deal collapsed.

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Once complete, the facility valued between $3 billion and $4 billion will eventually have the capacity to refine 60,000 barrels of crude oil per day — much of which will be sent to the capital Kampala via pipeline.

The prospective developer concluded and presented the refinery initial designs to government in March 2019, where upon a delegation led by Energy Minister Irene Muloni went to Italy to review.

In the Milan meeting, Saipem SPA—the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contractor in the consortium—reportedly presented the final refinery configuration plan, as part of the contractual obligations contained in the Project Framework Agreement (PFA) signed in April 2018, officials said.

Minister Mulono applauded the special purpose vehicle for “reaching this milestone in the time scheduled under the PFA and encouraged them to meet all the remaining activities on schedule to ensure the refinery project is completed in the time agreed.”

Sources familiar with the PFA say it elaborates the detail of the project, key of which is the Front End Engineering study, expected to be completed by end of the year.

The financial detail of PFA including; UNOC’s equity through its subsidiary Uganda Refinery Holding Company (URHC), in-kind equity, cash, pre-finance, debt finance, lenders and the debt structure, once concluded will lead to Final Investment Decision expected by 2023 ceteris peribus.

“We are fully committed to ensuring completion of all commercially viable pre-Final Investment Studies activities as scheduled in the PFA,” Yaatra’s chief executive Rajakumari Jandhyala said in a statement in March.