1 June 2016

Uganda: National Oil Company Gets CEO

Photo: Daily Nation
An aerial view of a Tullow oil rig in Turkana County in Uganda (file photo).

The Board of Uganda's National Oil Company (UNOC) has appointed Dr. Josephine Wapakabulo as the company's Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

Emmanuel Katongole, the Board Chairman in a statement issued today said Dr. Wapakabulo will lead the set up of UNOC and manage its transformation into a world class oil and gas company as the country prepares for commercial oil production.

National Oil Company Board Chairman, Emmanuel Katongole (Photo: Beatrice Ongode)

Wapakhabulo, is the daughter of the late James Wapakhabulo, a former Speaker of Parliament, Foreign Affairs Minister and Deputy Prime Minister.

The statement from the Board notes she has worked extensively on standards for the petroleum industry focusing on integrating life-cycle data for oil and gas production facilities.

"The UNOC Board of Directors (BOD) is confident that Dr. Wapakabulo brings experience, energy, drive and enthusiasm to the UNOC," the statement reads, "Her appointment takes effect on August 1st."

The statement adds that she holds a Global Executive MBA from INSEAD Business School based in France and a PhD in Information Science, MSc in Information Technology and a BSc Electronic and Electrical Engineering all from Loughborough University in the United Kingdom (UK).

The appointment of the company's CEO follows the inauguration of the Board Of Directors whose other members include; Biwaga Stella, Grace Tubwita, Eng. Irene Paulene Batebe, Geoffrey Andama, and Francis Twinamatsiko at the end of last 2015.

The company was set up by Article 42 of the Petroleum (Exploration, Development and Production) Act 2013 and incorporated under the Company's Act 2012. Registered in June last year, the UNOC is a limited liability company wholly owned by Government.

After its registration, Fred Kabagambe Kaliisa, the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development said that the company would handle government's commercial interests in oil and gas. These interests include; government's 15 percent interest in the Production Sharing Agreements (PSAs) with the licensed oil companies and the 40% share in the oil refinery, among others.

With the company, government is also expected to be in a better position to enhance national content in the sector.

Uganda has huge deposits of gas and some 6.5 billion barrels of oil, of which 1.4 billion is recoverable. The country is currently embarking on the development phase of the fields from which international oil companies-Tullow Oil, Total E&P and CNOOC-are expected to start producing first oil between 2019 and 2020.

Following a deal with Tanzania last month, apart from what will feed the refinery, the other crude will be shipped out to foreign markets through a 4.5 billion shilling pipeline from Hoima through the Tanzanian port of Tanga.

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