Uganda discovered oil deposits worth 2.5 billion barrels in the Albertine Rift Basin in 2006 and since then country has discovered more oil deposits with the updated estimates of oil reserves now standing at about 3.5 billion barrels. It is important to that the reserves are only from 40% of the Albertine Graben area under oil exploration and this same area still has great potential for more discoveries.
Uganda has 12 billion standard cubic feet (339 million cubic meters) of natural gas reserves in its Albertine Graben region. The gas is in addition to oil reserves of more than 3.5 billion barrels of crude oil.
Impact of Oil on the Environment and other sectors
Over 50% of birds, 39% of mammals, 19% of amphibians, and 14% of reptiles and plants found in mainland Africa have their home in the Rift Valley. The process of oil exploration in this area if not done under proper control could causes harm to the wildlife. The exploration process displace our wildlife heritage.
Uganda as a country stands to improve its economy using oil and gas revenue although, the country’s tourism and environment sectors could pay an expensive price.
Planned utilization of oil and gas revenue
The oil and gas revenues will certainly dramatically increase the government revenue for investing in building the country’s infrastructure, agricultural transformation, and human capital development. The investment is very necessary for the development of Uganda. However Uganda faces the challenges of enhancing the capacity of Uganda to plan to effectively absorb expected oil and gas revenues and to properly account for the application of the oil and gas revenue given the capacity of the human resources.
Slow oil development efforts
Uganda’s oil development efforts have stagnated over the period as a result of the following issues:
1. Government’s slow process in issuing licenses to the sector.
2. Lack of capacity on the side of government
3. Lack of effective legal framework
4. Infrastructural setbacks
5. Transparency challenges