East Africa: Kenya to Build Three Additional Ships to Boost Oil Shipment to Uganda

18 May 2023

Johannesburg — Kenya is building three ships to guarantee daily trips to Uganda rather than the country's present weekly excursions, according to reports. Kenya's Energy and Petroleum Cabinet Secretary Davis Chirchir said this is in an effort to enhance the export of oil products to Uganda through Lake Victoria. Despite the U.S.$14.57 million project that has been operating since January, Kenya has barely transported 20 million liters of petroleum products, Chirchir said.

The jetty facility was built in May 2017 and completed in March 2018 to ease the transportation of petroleum products from the Kisumu KPC depot to Uganda by ship through Lake Victoria but it was never used following delays by Uganda to build its off-loading jetty in Lake Victoria. The operations finally resumed in January 2023.

The facility also supports the export needs of neighboring countries such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Sudan, Burundi, and Rwanda. The fuel is transported to the Mahathi terminal in Entebbe, Uganda where the product is loaded onto trucks and then shipped to the four neighboring countries.

Chirchir expressed relief that the three ships will help reduce road congestion and improve the reliability of supply but said that a lot still needs to be done to work on infrastructure improvement in the petroleum export sector, especially because trucks accessing Uganda move through narrow roads hindering quick transportation.

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