Energy ministers of Uganda and Tanzania said on Friday that the two East African countries have agreed to conduct a feasibility study for a pipeline connecting Tanzania’s gas fields to Uganda, a move aimed at advancing a plan first announced in 2016.
Tanzania possesses approximately 57.5 trillion cubic feet of recoverable natural gas, utilizing a significant portion for electricity generation for their 1,800 MW grid. Uganda, with an installed capacity of around 1,500 MW mainly reliant on hydropower, seeks to diversify energy sources.
Reuters reports that, the agreement follows a Memorandum of Understanding from 2018, and officials emphasize the need for timely execution. “Time is running, we are behind time, let us make it happen,” Tanzania’s deputy prime minister and energy minister Doto Biteko said during a signing ceremony in the capital city Dodoma late on Thursday.
Ugandan Energy Minister Ruth Nankabirwa urged financing institutions to support the gas project, emphasizing its cleanliness. “I want to ask those financing institutions that had dropped the idea of financing fossil fuels to come and finance this gas project because the gas is clean,” she said, without giving a timeline for the construction.
Tanzania is awaiting cabinet approval for a $42 billion liquefied natural gas (LNG) project, set to unlock a gas deposit exceeding 36 trillion cubic feet.
Both countries are also involved in a pipeline project with TotalEnergies and CNOOC to transport Ugandan crude oil to Tanzania.
The timeline for construction was not specified. The environmental impact and whether the pipeline will be newly constructed or integrated into existing networks were not detailed.