Crude Oil Production Drop In Nigeria, Libya

 

Terror activities by Boko Haram in Nigeria and Islamic State in Libya have led to decline in crude oil production, a crude oil productio survey carried out by Platts indicated in a report.

The report also revealed a significant drop of crude oil production in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) member states. Libya and Nigeria are OPEC members from the African continent.

Nigerian output dipped by 40,000 b/d to 1.86 million b/d as a slightly shorter loading program was exacerbated by the declaration of force majeure on Brass River crude exports on December 24. Trading sources said exports of the grade restarted in the latter part of this week.

December also saw the restart of the 125,000 b/d Kaduna refinery and the two refineries at Port Harcourt with combined nameplate capacity of 210,000 b/d.

By early January, all four of the country's plants were online for the first time since July last year, although utilization rates were unclear. Nigeria's total nameplate capacity is 445,000 b/d.

A United Nations (UN)-brokered deal between Libya's two rival governments in late December has so far failed to bring about greater political stability, as shown by the recent spate of attacks carried out by the so-called Islamic State.

Libyan production in December averaged 380,000 b/d, largely unchanged from November and still below the 480,000 b/d achieved in March, which was its strongest month in 2015.

Libya's oil output continues to languish at a fraction of the 1.58 million b/d level pumped before the 2011 uprising due to instability in the country and technical difficulties at oil fields.

Crude prices, meanwhile, remain under pressure from oversupply and brimming stocks, and are trading at multi-year lows.

Brent futures sank as low as $27.10/barrel on January 20, the lowest level since early November 2003. OPEC's own crude basket, representing streams from all 13 member countries, stood at $22.48/b on January 20.

OPEC is not due to meet until June 2, but the relentless fall in prices has renewed calls for an emergency meeting from the group's more cash-strapped members. Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro earlier this week called for an emergency meeting to stabilize oil prices.

So far, there has been no sign from Saudi Arabia that it is ready to abandon the market share strategy that it persuaded OPEC to adopt in November 2014.

Saudi Oil Minister Ali Naimi told an event in Riyadh on Sunday he was optimistic that world oil markets would stabilize, that oil prices would improve and that major producing countries would cooperate with each other.

When OPEC decided in late 2014 to defend its market share rather than reduce output, it maintained the 30 million b/d ceiling that had been in place since the beginning of 2012.

At the group's recent meeting on December 4, however, ministers failed to agree on a ceiling level, thus removing the remaining notional constraint on freewheeling production.

Fuel Retailer Opens Another Java House Restaurant

 

Vivo Energy Uganda, the company that distributes and markets Shell branded fuels and lubricants, has invested in a programme to upgrade its Shell service stations to offer a wider range of services.

The new programme targets both shoppers and motorists who visit Shell service stations by partnering with professionals who share in its ambition to invest and grow and provide better services to customers.

Vivo Energy Uganda’s latest partnership is with Java Coffee House, a food and beverages retailer. The former will be setting up food joints at Shell fuel stations. On Monday the partnership saw another Java outlet opened at Shell Lugogo bypass.

The Managing Director Vivo Energy Uganda, Hans Paulsen, said that Vivo Energy understands that customers are looking for more than just a fill-up when they drive to the Shell forecourts.

Paulsen said that it’s not just about the quality fuels and lubricants sold to the customers, but about delivering a complete service station experience. He said that Shell fuel stations are looking forward to growing this partnership.

“Across our network we are looking to upgrade our service stations to a modern format and that is why this partnership with Java house with its well-known and high quality service restaurant brands is so important to us” Paulsen said.

He further noted that the partnership will see Vivo Energy strategically add Java house restaurants to a number of Shell service stations in Uganda to offer customers the best and most memorable convenience retail experience.

The Business Development manager Java House, Sam Imende said that they are delighted to have partnered with Vivo Energy Uganda, allowing it to operate outlets at Shell service stations in Uganda.

“This partnership will benefit customers, giving them more convenience, quality and choice. We have a great relationship with Vivo Energy Uganda and are looking forward to increase our chain to more Shell service stations”, he said.

The opening of Java house at Shell lugogo comes with a promotion where customers who Fuel up at Shell Lugogo any day, from Monday to Friday between 7am to 9am for 100,000 win a Java House breakfast pack and a Kiddies Meal Promo where customers who Fuel up at Shell Lugogo before 10am on Saturday 30th January will win a free kiddie meal at Java Coffee house.

 

Besigye: Oil Shouldn’t Be A Curse

 

Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) presidential candidate Kizza Besigye has said oil in Bunyoro region, western Uganda, shouldn’t be a curse but a blessing to the nation.

The former military officer, now a leading opposition figure, was speaking at various political rallies in Hoima district in Bunyoro this weekend as he lobbied to be elected the next president of Uganda.

“Oil can never become a curse to a nation when there is good governance & a leadership that believes in equal opportunities and shared prosperity,” Besigye, who faulted the sitting government for keeping the people of Bunyoro in poverty, stated.

He promisingly added that “Our government will ensure that the people of Hoima benefit from their resources especially oil that is ozzing from their ground. Our government will make sure their resources (oil) will work for”

There is increasing unrest in Bunyoro region that government is not doing enough to see to it that indegineous people benefit from the natural resource. The fears have also been expressed by kingdom officials including the King of Bunyoro, Omukama Rukirabasaija Agutamba Solomon Gafabusa Iguru I.

Besigye’s sentiments are also shared by a wide section of Ugandans who believe that the current government lacks the moral capacity to use oil revenue appropriately. They fear oil money will be mismanagement and lead the country into a resource curse or what many call oil curse.

The resource curse, also known as the paradox of plenty, refers to the paradox that countries and regions with an abundance of natural resources, specifically point-source non-renewable resources like minerals and fuels, tend to have less economic growth and worse development outcomes than countries with fewer natural resources.

Countries that are rich in petroleum tend to have less democracy, less economic stability,  a decline in the competitiveness of other economic sectors (Dutch disease), and more frequent civil wars than countries without oil.

Total Calls For More Startupper Of The Year Contest Entries

 

Open registration for the "Startupper of the Year by Total" contest, which began November 1, 2015, ends Sunday, January 31, 2016 at 11 p.m. GMT. So don't wait any longer to submit your entry at the online registration site, http://startupper.total.com/.

"Startupper of the Year by Total" is a Total contest being held in 34 African countries.[1] It aims to identify and provide financial and other support to the best projects to create or grow a business under two years old in Uganda. The winning projects will be awarded the "Startupper of the year 2016 by Total" label, along with financial aid and coaching from Total Uganda.

Entry is free and open to any Ugandan national aged 35 or under.  A jury of professionals will shortlist up to 10 of the best projects in Uganda based on criteria such as innovativeness, originality, boldness, growth potential and ability to improve people's living conditions.

The list of finalists will be published on the contest's website no later than February 28, 2016. After contestants make their final presentations, no later than March 15, 2016, the jury will select up to three of the best projects, which will be announced at an official awards presentation ceremony.

Complete rules for the contest are freely accessible online at [http://startupper.total.com/].

The "Startupper of the Year by Total" contest is part of our overall policy to support the socioeconomic development of all our host countries worldwide. It is a very concrete initiative to help strengthen the economic base and employment locally, in Africa, by helping the boldest, most innovative entrepreneurs carry out their projects. The contest aims to foster new initiatives, while upholding Total's core values.

[1] Algeria, Angola, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Republic of Guinea, Republic of the Congo, Reunion, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Vivo Energy Uganda Rewards Shell Select Customers

 

Vivo Energy Uganda, the company that distributes and markets Shell branded fuels and lubricants, has made shopping at Shell Select Stores more rewarding for customers who spent at least 50,000 shillings at the participating Shell  Select Stores in Kampala from October to December 2015. 

For each visit that was made to the Shell Select Store, customers were required to spend at least 50,000 shillings to enter a draw that would enable them stand a chance to win free shopping worth 50,000 shillings for 12 weeks and a grand prize of a kitchen make over that includes fridges, microwaves, coffee makers, kettles, steamers and blenders. 

Vivo Energy Uganda recently conducted the draw and the five lucky winners of the kitchen makeover are; Wamala Joseph, Deborah Mwesigwa, Kayiwa Vanita, Kagwa Mariam and Dhamuluka Julius. 

Speaking at the award ceremony held at Shell Kasangati, Vivo Energy country sale director Edward Walugembe said “As a market leader, defending your position involves staying meaningfully and relevantly connected to our customers. We continuously give them reason to choose us as we make our Shell Select stores the more convenient offer to our customer. The promotion aimed to reward our most loyal customers as a way of expressing our appreciation. We encourage the public to continue shopping at our Shell Select Stores for even more exciting promotions in the New Year”. 

The winners expressed their appreciation and joy on receiving their prizes. Mariam Kagwa particularly stated that she feels extremely lucky to have been one of the winners among so many other shoppers. She added that this reward has motivated her to continue her loyalty to the Shell Select store which she often visits.  

Vivo Energy invested in a programme to refurbish Shell Select Stores to offer a wider range of services to both motorists who fuel and service their vehicles at Shell as well as shoppers seeking quick and convenient shopping.  

The company has also partnered with quick service restaurants at different Shell Service stations and opened up new restaurants at the stations including Kahwa2go at Shell Jinja road, Café Pap at Shell Bukoto, KFC restaurants at Shell Kabalagala and Shell Kira road, Java House at Shell Lugogo as well as Prunes Express at Shell Bugolobi. All these efforts are aimed to improve convenience and a better customer experience at Shell stations.

 

Government Targets Gas In Albertine Region To Reduce Cost Of Farm Fertilizers

 

Farmers in Uganda will soon access cheap and locally made fertilizers when factories in Tororo in Eastern Uganda and Lake Albert in Bunyoro, western Uganda become operational.

 The revelation was made by President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni while addressing a press conference in Jinja Tuesday 29th December, 2015.

The president’s comments were triggered by farmer’s minimal use of fertilizers because they cannot afford to buy imported fertilizers. This has led to low farm output.

“The other issue is that they are not using fertilizers, they are using natural fertilizers. We are going to work out a programme,” the president said referring to low farm out by farmers in the country.

“We are building a factory of fertilizers in Tororo, we shall build another one in Lake Albert with the gas there, so that with the fertilizers our people get higher yields.” President Museveni who is seeking re-election said promisingly.

Government, according to a report by New Vision newspaper, is undertaking a $560m Sukulu Phosphates project in Tororo district in Eastern Uganda intended to produce fertilisers to meet the country’s needs.

Government partnered with a Chinese firm, Guangzhou Dongsong Energy, to develop the project. They also plan to build a 5MW power plant in the area.

The President of Guangzhou Dongsong Energy Group, LV Weidong, is quoted by the newspaper saying that the company intends to produce 300,000 tonnes of phosphate fertilisers.

In 2014, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development announced that Uganda’s oil deposits had risen from 3.5 billion barrels to 6.5 billion barrels.

It also revealed a significant increase in gas deposits to  over 500 billion cubic feet in the Albertine region. It is this gas that will be used to manufacture fertilizers which farmers can access cheaply.

Total Want Oil Production To Start ‘Soon’ Despite Volatile Prices

In a meeting with President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, Patrick Pouyanné, CEO and Chairman of Total, Total’s expressed strong commitment to work towards producing the Ugandan oil resources as soon as possible whatever the global oil price.

Pouyanné’s lack of fear for the volatile oil prices that have ripped the industry globally comes from the fact the ‘Uganda oil resources are potentially low cost resources' and 'will be competitive in the market’

President Museveni and Patrick Pouyanné according to a statement issued by the oil company discussed ‘issues related to the oil industry in general as well as the projects of Total in Uganda’  at the December 22, 2015 meeting.

The statement said the two discussed the studied outlets to market the Ugandan oil at national, regional and international level including the view that the crude export route should be primarily selected on the basis of economical criteria, lowest cost and the reliability and safety of the operations.

Total Searching For Best Innovative Business Idea In Shs130m Challenge

Total Uganda recently launched the “Startupper Challenge of the year” to support innovative projects in the country. The call for projects is free and open to any Ugandan citizen aged 35 years and below.

While launching the contest at the Sheraton Kampala Hotel, Florentin de Loppinot, the Managing Director of Total Uganda, explained that the Challenge is aimed at identifying, rewarding and supporting the best projects in enterprise creation and development in Uganda and 33 other countries on the African continent”.

“We have put an age limit of 35 years because we believe the youth are vital in realizing the social economic development of this country,” de Loppinot said.

Initiated by the Total Group in 34 African countries simultaneously, the Challenge will support innovative projects which are less than 2-years old.

The winning projects will be granted the “Startupper of the year 2016 by Total” label, with a financial support of up to Shs130 million and a coaching from Total Uganda.

The application process started on 1st November 2015 (8.00 AM GMT) and is directly available on the website: http://startupper.total.com/. Candidates will be able to apply until 31st January 2016 (11.00 PM GMT).

A jury of professionals will preselect up to ten of the best projects in Uganda based on the following criteria: how innovative, original, daring the project is, its development potential and its capacity to improve the living conditions of the populations.

The finalists’ list will be published on the website of the contest, following the final selection phase, which will end by March 15th, 2016.

The 10 finalists shall present to the jury that shall choose the best projects - three maximum – and the results will be announced during the awards ceremony.

The whole contest rules are freely available on line on the dedicated website (http://startupper.total.com/).

The “Startupper Challenge of the year by Total” is part of Total’s global initiative of supporting the socioeconomic development of all the countries where it operates worldwide. It is a very concrete action launched to locally contribute to the reinforcement of the industrial fabric and to employment on the African continent, by supporting the most daring and innovative entrepreneurs in realizing their project. This approach targets the emergence of new initiatives, while respecting the Total Group values. 

Tullow Oil Scholars Complete UK Masters Programmes

Eleven Ugandans, awarded scholarships in 2014 under the Tullow Group Scheme Scholarship (TGSS), have successfully completed their Masters’ programmes in various fields related to the oil and gas industry in the UK.

The graduates were recently hosted to a welcome reception organised by the British Council at Kampala Serena Hotel.

Jimmy Mugerwa, General Manager, Tullow Uganda, was pleased to welcome the students back from their studies saying it was a privilege for Tullow to facilitate this learning programme and to ensure that candidates grow and succeed in not just the oil and gas industry, but also the economic diversification in Uganda.

The Tullow Group Scholarship Scheme was set up to support talented nationals like the successful scholars we see here today. “By developing local capacity, we are investing in skilled human capital which is a critical resource for any business and more so in the growing oil and gas sector. I’d like to thank the British Council for their efforts and strong partnership with Tullow in making this scheme a success.”

This year the scheme supported postgraduate degrees in Engineering Management, Infrastructure Engineering, Environmental Technology & Petroleum and Gas Engineering. These postgraduate degrees were undertaken at the University of Birmingham, University of Surrey, Coventry University and University of Salford respectively.

Last year 11 students were selected from over 2,000 candidates who applied for the scholarships. Three of the scholarships were awarded to successful applicants from Hoima district where Tullow operates, to encourage local participation in the oil and gas industry.

Abdul-Nasser Segawa, MSc IT for the Oil and Gas Industry, Robert Gordon University, explained that the Tullow Group Scholarship was a great opportunity that not only helped them advance their education but also career aspirations.

“It was a cross-dimensional experience that has equipped me with the technical skills and professional competence I needed to achieve goals in an IT environment not only in Oil and Gas Industry. I was particularly impressed by the available learning resources and I enjoyed learning with people from different countries across the globe. I look forward to applying the knowledge I have gained from this course and contributing to a bigger picture that will advance the growth of my country.”

Carol Kasisira, returning scholar added being a student in the United Kingdom was a very enlightening and life changing experience, one that they will always be grateful for and look back to. “It led to significant personal and professional growth. The mesh of different ethnic, religious and philosophical backgrounds, coupled with having the opportunity to learn from some of the greatest minds in the water and environmental engineering field, allowed for a wonderful learning experience. There was so much to experience in the UK; the English culture, having a sandwich and tea as a meal, to the magnificent cathedrals and castles in Scotland, the amazing scenery in the Lake District, to mention but a few."

The Tullow Group Scholarship Scheme was launched on the 25th January 2012 offering 110 scholarship awards allocated across the following countries: Ghana, Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Gabon, Mauritania, Cote d’Ivoire, French Guiana and Bangladesh.

The scholarships were made available to those students who were committed to making a contribution to their respective country’s development. The scheme is run in partnership with the British Council.

Uganda Put Under Pressure To Join EITI And End Oil Secrecy

The government of Uganda has been asked to subscribe to Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), a global Standard, to promote open and accountable management of natural resources.

To ensure government adheres to its responsibility of being an accountable stakeholder in the extractive industry, Global Rights Alert (GRA), a human rights- civil society organization based in Kampala, launched ‘Our Oil Our Future’ campaign.

The campaign seeks to encourage the government of Uganda to improve transparency in the governance of oil and other mineral resources by signing on to the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI).

The campaign will collect 1000 signatures from the public with each signature petitioning the president to subscribe to EITI so that the government and oil companies open up on their transaction to allow citizens follow the transactions.

The #OurOilOurFuture campaign seeks to put an end to oil secrecy as it has been exhibited in oil producing countries. By signing onto the petition, Ugandans will be demanding for accountability and good governance within the extractive industry.

The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative Standard guides countries in setting up effective mechanisms so that citizens can know what companies are paying to government, and what government officially receives from companies.

Winfred Ngabiirwe, the executive director of GRA, in an interview at the launch explained that once the public is able to trace the money exchanging hands between government and companies, Ugandans are able to monitor and know if they are getting the services they deserve.

In order to see substantive improvements to the level of transparency in Uganda’s oil and minerals sectors, there must be commitment from the highest levels of government, Ngabiirwe said, adding that they expect a positive response from government within three months.

Since by law natural resources, such as oil, gas, metals and minerals, belong to a country’s citizens, the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative seeks to strengthen government and company systems, inform public debate, and enhance trust.

Extraction of these resources can lead to economic growth and social development. However, when poorly managed it has too often lead to corruption and even conflict. More openness around how a country manages its natural resource wealth is necessary to ensure that these resources can benefit all citizens.

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