Serowe — Botswana Oil Limited (BOL), a company wholly owned by government, will introduce rural area energy centres (RAECs) to mitigate the challenge of access to fuel in remote areas that are not serviced by the market.
Briefing the Central District Council about BOL, the general manager of operations, Mr Mosetlho Kenamile said BOL would engage in the distribution of petroleum products to the rural areas where multinationals were unable to operate.
The RAECs would be exclusive to citizen emerging companies or local communities, Mr Kenamile revealed, and added that it was a deliberate BOL strategy towards the empowerment of the former.
He also said the company was working in conjunction with Botswana Bureau of Standards where the development of appropriate standards was at an advanced stage. He emphasised the importance of safety at fuel storage tanks and the dangers thereof.
Mr Kenamile also said BOL was facilitating citizen owned companies by offering storage rental to citizen emerging companies at both BOL managed depots, training of CECs on the industry and preferential fuel supply tenders.
He said findings by BOL were that many CECs had expressed interest in participating in the oil industry whilst a few were active.
He added that the interest, as noted by BOL, was in the importation of petroleum products, transportation of petroleum products and consultancy.
On other issues, Mr Kenamile said his company was looking into future plans of converting vast coal resources into liquid petroleum products as well as other by-products. He said the move would create jobs and reduce dependency on imports.
In ensuring security of supply of petroleum in the country, BOL is currently in the process of developing storage infrastructure locally and abroad. Locally, BOL is working on the expansion of the Francistown storage facility as well as establishing a storage facility in Ghanzi amongst other endeavours.
Outside the country, Mr Kenamile pointed out that BOL was in a bid to rent coastal storage in Mozambique, construct another coastal storage in Durban in conjunction with South Africa amongst other foresighted developments to satisfy the 1 200 billion litres of petroleum products consumed locally.
These 1 200 billion litres of petroleum products were wholly imported.
With the aforementioned interventions, Mr Kenamile revealed that over time BOL may start importing petroleum directly from oil producing nations instead of buying from South Africa, Mozambique and Namibia.
Source : BOPA