The two agreed on the conditions of how the Uganda National Oil Company (UNOC) will join and participate in the East African Pipeline project, as well as on the Host Government Agreement which will govern the export pipeline in Uganda. The project is expected to cost the consortium USD 3.5 billion with construction expected to start early next year.
State House sources last night confirmed the meeting between the two officials but said a full statement would be issued on Saturday.
The statement is expected to reveal that the French company has reached a final investment decision on its oil interests in Uganda. The decision is usually the last commitment by investors and follows assessments that show the viability of the project.
The announcement is expected to unlock up to $10 billion of investment in the country to get the crude oil deposits out of the ground and onto the world market. Apart from the investments in the oil wells in western Uganda, the flagship project is expected to be a crude oil export pipeline to the Indian Ocean through Tanzania.
Other investments already underway include a new airport in Kibaale, near Hoima, roads in the part of the country with proven crude oil deposits, and an assortment of camps and other facilities to cater for the thousands of workers expected to work in the oil and gas sector.
Government plans to also build a refinery to process some of the crude oil within the country for the domestic and regional market.